Roasted Sea Bass with Blistered Tomato and Caper Sauce is a wonderful example of how to make a sumptuous yet easy one-pan meal. The use of seasonal cherry tomatoes in combination with herbs and capers makes this dish feel fresh and vibrant. This dish combines the sweetness of roasted cherry tomatoes with the brininess of capers and the freshness of herbs. Here are some key elements:
- Cherry Tomatoes: The star ingredient that’s not only seasonal but also contributes both sweetness and tartness to the dish.
- Herb Sprigs: The use of thyme, oregano, or marjoram adds aromatic nuances to the dish.
- Capers and Balsamic Vinegar: These bring a touch of brininess and acidity, which can elevate the flavors of both the fish and tomatoes.
- Whitefish Fillets: The recommendation for sea bass, halibut, or swordfish allows for versatility while maintaining the dish’s overall character.
- Lemon Zest: A final flourish that adds freshness and tanginess to the dish.
- Tomato Prep: Making small incisions in the tomatoes is a clever way to expedite their cooking process.
- One-Pan Magic: Using a single, oven-safe skillet simplifies both cooking and cleanup.
- Flavor Building: The step of stirring in herbs, garlic, capers, and vinegar to the tomatoes creates a rich and flavorful base for the fish.
- Stovetop to Oven: Starting on the stovetop and transferring to the oven ensures that the fish is cooked evenly while absorbing the flavors from the sauce.
- Short Cooking Time: The relatively quick cooking time for the fish ensures that it remains tender and juicy, a crucial point when working with whitefish which can dry out easily.
Here’s a delicious recipe for Roasted Sea Bass with Blistered Tomato and Caper Sauce.
- 1 1/2 pounds cherry tomatoes (left on the vine, optional)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing on the fish
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 3 to 4 sprigs fresh thyme, oregano, or marjoram
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 heaping tablespoons drained capers
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 4 center-cut whitefish fillets, such as sea bass or halibut, each about 6 ounces
- Finely grated lemon zest
- With a paring knife, make a small incision in the tomatoes. This step will hasten their cooking process.
- Heat the oven to 375 degrees.
- If using the stovetop, heat the oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add the tomatoes and cook until they begin to break down and release their juices, about 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper, herb sprigs, minced garlic, capers, and balsamic vinegar. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes to meld the flavors, stirring frequently.
- Brush the fish fillets with olive oil and season them with salt and black pepper. Nestle the fish in the pan between the tomatoes.
- Transfer the skillet to the preheated oven. Roast until the fish is just cooked through, which should take about 10 to 12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish.
- Garnish the dish with finely grated lemon zest and fresh herbs. Serve immediately.
Garnishing with lemon zest and fresh herbs not only adds to the flavor but also enhances the visual appeal of the dish.
Overall, this recipe is an excellent blend of simplicity, fresh flavors, and smart cooking techniques. It’s a great way to celebrate the last of the season’s cherry tomatoes, and would likely be a hit for any dinner occasion. Enjoy your meal!