Any kind of aquatic life that is regarded as food fit for consumption by humans is called seafood and includes fish and shellfish.

Fish are of two kinds, either 'Round fish or Flat fish' and come from Saltwater (Ocean) or Freshwater (Dams, Rivers, and Lakes). On the other hand, shellfish include various species of Molluscs (Squids, Mussels, Oysters, Octopus) and Crustaceans (Lobsters, Crabs, Shrimp).

The most important factor to look into when choosing fish for a dish is the color of the flesh. The flesh is described as either 'white or dark' and the dark-colored fish can range from a pinky-red to orange or even brown in color. The oil content within the flesh determines the color; the higher the oil content the darker the color.

Classification and category of fish and shellfish helps determine the method of cooking that could be suitable for each kind.

To learn more about the points to keep in mind when choosing fresh Fish, fresh Molluscs, fresh Crustaceans, and some popular types of Seafood, you can go through the introductory lesson: Seafood… Cooking Fish, Shellfish, and more!

Seafood Recipe of the Day - The Baked Sea Bass

The Baked Sea Bass

About Baked Sea Bass

Sea bass has grown significantly in popularity over recent years with chefs and home cooks because of the versatility of the firm white fish.

The sea bass is a lean saltwater fish that is meaty and suitable for most types of cooking. Celebrity Chefs around the world embrace the sea bass, enjoying its ability to “hold any method of cooking and accept any spice” and never overcooks.

In addition to the juicy texture of the flesh, part of the appeal of sea bass is its attractive silver skin which cooks beautifully and looks striking on the plate.

The lemon-caper sauce works well with this fish along with the vegetables cooked with it.

This Dish

Baked Sea Bass laid over potatoes with tomatoes & anchovies, scattered with red pepper on the side, with sprinkled garlic, oregano sprigs, olive oil and seasoned with salt and black pepper to flavour.

Recipe Card (to serve 4 pax)

Ingredients Quantity
For the Baked Sea Bass
Sea bass 1 piece (1.5 kg)
Saffron a pinch
Anchovies 1/2 can
Potatoes (peeled, sliced into 1 cm) 750gm
Plum tomatoes (cut into quarters) 4 pieces
Chicken stock/ water 1 cup approx.
Red peppers (cut into 8 chunks) 4 pieces
Garlic (sliced into three) 8 cloves
Oregano (dried) 8 sprigs
Olive oil ¼ cup + 4 tbsp
Lemon (sliced) 1 pc
Salt & fresh ground pepper as required
For the Lemon & Caper Sauce
Butter, chopped ½ cup
Shallots (finely chopped) ½ cup
Parsley (finely chopped) 1 tbsp
Baby capers (rinsed and chopped) 1 tbsp
Lemon (juice) ¼ cup

 

Method of Cooking

For the Baked Sea Bass

1. Preheat the oven to 200C. Place the saffron in a small bowl pour 2 tbsp of hot water on it and leave to soak.

2. In a saucepan, add water as required and season with salt, bring it to a boil, and put the potatoes in a pan and par-boil for 7 minutes. Drain well and arrange them in narrow strips on the base of a large roasting dish, large enough to hold the sea bass, either lengthways or diagonally.

3. The potatoes should form a bed for the fish, leaving plenty of room on either side for the red peppers.

4. In a mixing bowl add the tomatoes, bell peppers, anchovies, garlic, olive oil, oregano, salt, pepper and toss well using hands.

5. Scatter the vegetables over the potatoes, pour the saffron water into the tray and make sure the water is just cover the surface of the roasting tray, hence add the chicken stock accordingly and bake in the oven for 10-12 mins.

6. Once cooked, spoon out the tomatoes and bell peppers in a bowl and set aside.

7. Score the fish 5-6 times on each side and then score it in the opposite direction to give an attractive criss-cross pattern. Rub it generously with some olive oil, season well with salt and pepper on the inside as well., stuff the fish with the sliced lemon and place it on top of the potatoes in the roasting tray.

8. Return the dish back to the oven and bake for a further 18- 20 mins until the fish is cooked through and the skin is crispy.

For the Lemons & Caper Sauce

1. Clarify the butter in a frying pan over medium heat.

2. Add the shallots and sweat for less than a min.

3. Add the capers and stir for 1-2 min or until the butter starts to lightly brown.

4. Take off heat and add lemon juice and parsley.

5. Season with salt and pepper.

6. Serve the baked sea bass with the potatoes, tomatoes, bell peppers, and lemon caper sauce.

Tip: for additional flavor stuff the fish with parsley stalks inside the fish before baking.