2 Fish from Greece sea basses 600-880g each, exfoliated and washed
1 large fennel or 2 smaller ones, along with their green leaves
1 medium-sized, thin-skinned unwaxed orange, or 1 blood orange.
1.5-2 teaspoons of fennel seeds
4-5 sticks of fresh fennel or dill
1.5 lemon, both its juice and zest
90 ml (6 teaspoons) olive oil
Salt and pepper
Baked fish with fennel and citrus fruit
Sea bass with fennel and orange is an especially easy and tasty way to serve baked fish. Served on top of the crispy fennel and juicy orange slices, it creates savory contrasts that make it an extremely tempting dish.
For this recipe, we use two fresh, top-notch, Greek aquaculture sea basses. You can follow the same recipe using sea bream or pagrus, or any other fish with rich, white flesh.
If you bake a large fish, roughly a kilo or more, adjust the baking time following the 30-minute-per-kilo rule. The oven must be preheated to the recommended temperature of 200C
Method: It takes 10 minutes to preheat the oven and 20-22 more to bake the fish. Season well the inside of the fish. The fennel slices should be thin to be baked properly.
Preheat the oven to 200°C
Prepare the base: Keep some fennel leaves for the serving and chop the rest with the fennel and dill. Cut the fennel in thin slices (0.5 cm). Cut the orange in thin slices. Spread them over the baking sheet and season them with salt and pepper. Then, place the sea basses on top and season the fish both inside and outside.
Prepare the lemon-fennel sauce: In a bowl, put the olive oil, the lemon juice and zest, the chopped fennel (or dill), 1 teaspoon of salt, ½ teaspoon of pepper and the ground fennel seeds. Stir to blend all ingredients.
Pour the sauce over the fish (on both sides and inside) , as well as over the fennel and orange slices.
Baking: Bake the fish in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes.
Serving: You can serve this dish as it is, from the baking tray-oven-proof dish, decorating with fresh fennel leaves. Alternatively, you can serve on a pre-heated serving dish, retaining the layers as they were when baked and pouring the sauce over them. The same applies when serving individual plates.