This dish is an undoubted show-stopper and yet doesn't involve lots of technical steps to create it, the most pivotal step is creating the chermoula marinade which admittedly entails a bit of chopping, but what recipes don't? Then, you can have fun playing with the spices, ready to lovingly rub the fillets in your home-made chermoula spice paste, or if you're feeling really lazy purchase the Belazu Chermoula paste, available now at most supermarkets.
I believe I am establishing a theme through the process of writing and consolidating my recipes. I consistently am attracted to no-fuss recipes with marvelous ingredients that speak for themselves. There are many ways to cook sea bass, however in this particular dish the fish absorbs complex flavors of tart lemon juice, fiery cayenne pepper and paprika picante , parsley and aromatic cumin.
Chermoula MARINADE (pictured left)
20g of fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped finely
20g of fresh coriander, chopped finely
4 tbsp of olive oil
3 small preserved lemons, chopped finely
juice of 1/2 a lemon
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp of ground cumin
2 tsp of paprika
salt and pepper
1 small handful of capers, chopped finely
pinch of cayenne pepper (more if you like it HOT)
Sea bass Tagine
5 *70g seabass fillets
A slosh of olive oil
700g of baby new potatoes, halved
2 peppers ideally 1 yellow and 1 green- cored and sliced into rings
2 large heritage tomatoes, sliced
50g of drained pitted olives
1 lemon, thinly sliced
salt and pepper
First prepare the chermoula marinade, start by chopping the herbs as finely as possible, make sure to save a small amount to garnish your dish later.
In a small bowl, combine the herbs with crushed garlic, preserved lemons, olive oil, lemon juice spices and salt and pepper. Stir the mixture and then in a bowl or glass tray rub the fish fillets with 2/3 of the marinade, leaving the rest for later. Cover the vessel with clingfilm and place the fish in the fridge, leaving it to marinade for 20 mins to 1 hour.
Set your oven to 180 c.
In a large deep oven dish, place your potatoes inside and rub with them with the remaining chermoula and more olive oil if necessary. Make sure to add a generous amount of salt and pepper to the potatoes. Next layer on the peppers and tomatoes adding a drizzle of olive oil. Cover the dish tightly with a sheet of aluminium foil and cook for 45 minutes.
Remove the dish from the oven and strip off the foil, check your potatoes are not too hard and have softened. Place the fish fillets gently on top of the roasted vegetables, add the lemon slices and sprinkle the olives. Re-cover the dish with the foil and roast for a further 7-10 minutes, watching the fish vigilantly as it will cook quickly. When the fish is done it should be opaque rather than translucent and gently use a fork to try to flake the fish off the skin, if the fish flakes easily it is done.
Serve on hot plates with a sprinkling of chopped herbs and seasoning, enjoy!
The Foody Girl