Cuisine Basque

I really, really love eating meat off the bone. Be it chicken, fish, lamb or pork. And I love it when my parents in law join me eating with their fingers. Next I need to teach them how to fold their legs under the table. We’re neat that way.

WHOLE ROASTED FISH BASQUAISE
(adapted from Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles Cookbook)
serve 2

2 potatoes
4 tbsp olive oil
1 red bell pepper, de-seed and cut into thin strips
1/2 cup broccoli floret
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 sprigs of thyme, leaves only
1/2 C white wine
1 C chicken broth
1 red snapper (or fish of your choice), about 900 g, scales & gills removed, fins clipped, guts removed but otherwise intact
Salt
Black pepper

1 tbsp lemon juice

  • Preheat the oven to 200 C.
  • Score the fish and season with salt & pepper inside out.
  • Place the potatoes in  a pot and cover them with water. Add salt to taste and bring to boil. Cook for 10 mins. Drain and set aside.
  • On the stove top, heat up the olive oil. Add onions, peppers and broccoli. Cover and cook over medium heat until the vegetables are soft and browned. Add garlic and thyme, cook for another 2-3 mins.
  • Add in the white wine and scrap the bottom to dislodge the grits. Add the chicken broth. And bring mixture to boil. Fish out the broccoli and set aside. (See note below)
  • Cut the potatoes into wedges. Place into a baking tray together with the fish. Pour the vegetable mixture (sans broccoli) into the baking tray and bake in the oven for 30 mins. Baste the fish with the juices 2-3 times during cooking.
  • Change the oven setting to broil. Remove the baking tray from the oven and remove the fish. Place the fish into a tray/ cookie sheet, pre-lined with parchment paper. Put the fish under broiler for 3-5 mins or until the skin turns brown.
  • Add back the broccoli, add in the lemon juice into the vegetable mixture, and season with salt & pepper. Re-heat if needed. Otherwise, pour over the fish and serve immediately.

Note: I don’t like the smell of roasted broccoli, so I fish them out.

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