Monday, June 27, 2011

Sea Bass with a Roasted Tomato and Pepper Herb Sauce

This is my party dish, but like almost everything I cook, it's dead easy.  What's more you can prepare this in stages, which for my lifestyle is essential.  I seem to have 1 hour windows available in my day between acting as chauffeur ferrying my children to and fro to their endless summertime activities.  How I long for the day when I will have the gift of an entire morning devoted to pottering around the kitchen, without having to referee a fight about who's wearing who's shirt or my cellphone ringing informing me I forgot to pick someone up.

My culinary heroine Ina Garten says roasting brings out the flavors of food and I agree. I used to make this with cherry tomatoes in the pan and it was lovely, but roasting them and adding a few other ingredients really does make it special.  Make the sauce in advance then you only have to and cope with the fish at the last minute.


Sea Bass fillets 
Olive oil
2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
salt and pepper
1 lemon, juice and zest

For the sauce

1 onion
1 red pepper
1 orange pepper
2-4 large tomatoes cut in half (horizontally)
2-3 cloves of garlic (in their skins)
salt and pepper
Juice of 1 lemon
Fresh oregano

Heat the oven to 425F

Place all the ingredients in a large roasting pan.  Pour over the olive oil, season with salt and pepper and squeeze over the juice of a lemon.  Mix to combine and place in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour. 

Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes or so.

Squeeze the garlic out of it's skin (discard skin) and place in a food processor with the other ingredients and blitz until you have a smooth sauce.

This can be kept in the fridge until later or used immediately.

Pat the fish dry and season with salt and pepper and sprinkle over a little lemon zest.

Heat the butter in a non-stick pan until bubbling.

Place the fish in the bubbling butter at a medium-high temperature and cook for 2 minutes or until golden, flip the fish over and cook for a further 2 minutes.  Add the lemon juice and spoon the foaming butter and juice over the fish as it cooks. 

If your fillets are thick and are not cooked through, remove the pan to the oven for approx 5-10 minutes. 

To serve, place a couple of tablespoons of sauce on a plate, place a fillet of fish on top and sprinkle over some chopped oregano (or your favorite fresh herb) and a slice of lemon.

This is lovely with a nice chilled glass of Pinot!


  1. What a lovely presentation! Did you make this for your family? How lucky for them.... Ina Garten is also one of my culinary heroines - I have a few of her recipes on my blog. I also agree that roasting veggies makes them divine and then whirring them to make a sauce is fantastic.
    PS. don't wish your kids grown up too soon - it goes by super quick!!! My youngest just got his driver's license.

  2. This looks delicious! I have never paired a red sauce with fish and you have inspired me to try it. Thanks!

  3. Amazing dish!Healthy and yummy!Love your presentation!Hugs,honey!

  4. Sounds like an excellent sauce. Reminds me a bit of ajvar from the Balkans. It goes well with meat, fish, sausages etc

  5. This looks delicious and easy. Love my gal Ina!


  6. That is one lovely dish. And I am certain it tasted as good as it looked.

  7. what a fancy dish,, looks lovely and you say its easy as well, this is a must rty thankyou.Oh yes and thankyou for visiting me today as well, have a super day,

  8. The red sauce looks like a very complex delicious flavor with those peppers in there. Very nice!

  9. Wish I could be at your house for dinner! This looks so amazing! I will be making this sometime soon!

  10. I love sea bass, one of my favorite types of fish. Well, and of course halibut and mahi mahi. :) I can definitely imagine this tasting lovely with a generously poured glass of pinot! Great pictures, Mary.

  11. I also love sea bass can I come to dinner :-))) Diane

  12. That sauce sounds heavenly! Mmmm! Great dish :)

  13. Another good looking dish...The sauce looks extremely good...
    I guess I'll have to try this one too. Sam is going to wander what has gotten into me with all this good food...


  14. Oh your guests must love to come to your house! What a beautiful and delicious looking dish. You have such a way of making fish look so pretty. :)

  15. I've never really had sea bass - but I think this is one fish worth adventuring into !! Looks delicious, Mary :) ~Megan

  16. Delicious! I bet even my not in love with fish family would try it! Great shot, it really looks fantastic!

  17. This roasted tomato sauce looks absolutely fantastic. And, the sea bass looks perfect!

  18. That is an absolutely perfect plate... You have made it look so pretty! And it sounds yummy too :) Great post, Mary!

  19. Beautiful presentation!
    The idea to pair fish with red sauce sounds good, I will try this recipe. Thanks for sharing! Rita

  20. genius in every way. Love the simplicity of the fish (Sea Bass speaks for itself, no need to over spice) but served over that sauce is perfect! Just love this

  21. How long do you reheat the sauce

  22. Wonderful dish for all the family; easy to prepare, very healthy and extremely delectable! Thank you.


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