Baked sea bass with romesco sauce
- Preparation and cooking time
- Serves 6
Cooking the fish on top of the veg is a simple way to add heaps of flavour
- 4 red peppers , deseeded and cut into large chunks
- 2 yellow peppers , deseeded and cut into large chunks
- 2 large tomatoes , halved (choose on the vine for best flavour)
- 1 large red onion , cut into wedges
- 4 large garlic cloves
- 4 tbsp olive oil , plus extra for drizzling
- 2 x 1kg/2lb 4oz whole line-caught sea bass , scaled and gutted
- 2 lemons , thinly sliced
- 2 large handfuls fresh mixed herbs (such as rosemary and thyme)
- 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 50g whole hazelnut , toasted
- STEP 1
Heat oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7. Tip all of the vegetables into a roasting tray with the unpeeled garlic cloves. Season, pour over 4 tbsp olive oil and toss together. Roast for 20 mins until starting to soften.
- STEP 2
Pat the fish dry with kitchen paper, then slash the skin on both sides with a sharp knife. Season the inside of the fish, then stuff with the lemon slices and half of the herbs. Place on top of the veg, drizzle with more oil, scatter with the rest of the herbs, then roast for 20-25 mins. When the fish is cooked, the flesh will feel firmer and the dorsal fin (the large one on the back) will pull away easily.
- STEP 3
Lift the fish and half of the vegetables onto a serving plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Spoon the rest of the vegetables and most of the juice from the roasting tray into a food processor. Add the vinegar and hazelnuts, blend until smooth, then check the seasoning. Serve the fish with the vegetables and sauce, lifting the fillets off the bone.
Romesco is a Catalonian sauce typically made with garlic, peppers, tomatoes and almonds. It’s perfect with fish, but you could also serve it with grilled cheese, meat roasts or pasta.