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Easy Baked Chilean Sea Bass

Chilean sea bass is white fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids with a unique large-flake texture and a mild flavor. Healthy fat makes the fish a little easier to cook because it won't toughen up like other fillets if it is a bit overcooked.

Chilean sea bass is a deep water fish also known by the less attractive name "toothfish," and is caught in ocean waters around Antarctica. Most Chilean sea bass is managed responsibly, but there are still some areas where it is overfished. If unsure, ask the seller if they know whether or not the fish was legally caught. The demand and resulting overfishing mean that Chilean sea bass tends to be relatively expensive, but its mild flavor and delicious texture make it worth the price.

This recipe includes a silky lemon and shallot buerre blanc sauce, which flavors the sea bass beautifully. Feel free to serve the fish plain if you like or use another type of sauce. A simple lemon and butter sauce is another good option, or drizzle the fish with a Parmesan cream sauce. Serve Chilean sea bass with pea puree, potatoes, or buttered rice or pasta to soak up the sauce.

Prep Time

        Prep time: 12 minutes
        Cook time: 20 minutes
        Yield: Serves 4


Ingredients

For the fish:

        olive oil
    •    kosher salt, to taste
    •    black pepper, to taste
    •    Creole seasoning or seasoning salt, to taste
    •    4 x Chilean sea bass fillets (about 6 ounces each)


For the lemon buerre blanc:

    •    1 tsp lemon zest
    •    1 tbsp heavy cream
    •    1/4 cup dry white wine
    •    lemon wedges, for garnish
    •    1 1/2 tbsps minced shallots
    •    6 tbsps cold butter, cut into 1 inch pieces


Method

  1. Gather the ingredients.
  2. Preheat the oven to 425F. Oil a broiler pan and rack or baking pan with olive oil.
  3. Lightly sprinkle the sea bass fillets all over with kosher salt, pepper and creole seasoning.
  4. Place the Chilean sea bass on the broiler rack, skin-side down.
  5. Bake the fish fillets at 425F for about 15 to 20 minutes depending on the thickness of the fillets. The fish is ready when the temperature reaches 425F on an instant-read thermometer inserted into the centre of a fillet.
  6. While the fish is baking, prepare the lemon buette blanc sauce.
  7. In a saucepan, combine the dry white wine, white wine vinegar and minced shallots.
  8. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook until it has reduced to about 2 tablespoons.
  9. Add the lemon juice, zest and heavy cream.
  10. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in 1 piece of the butter.
  11. Set it back over low heat and continue whisking until the butter has almost melted.
  12. Continue with the remaining pieces of butter until all are incorporated.
  13. Taste and add salt and pepper, as needed. Whisk until well blended. If the sauce is too hot or too cold, it can separate, so keep it warm at least 80F but no hotter than about 135F until serving time.
  14. Arrange the fish on plates with lemon wedges and drizzle with the lemon buerre blanc.


TIPS:

    •    If the creole seasoning is salty, omit the kosher salt.

    •    If you need to make the sauce ahead of time, keep it warm over very low heat, whisking every so often to keep the emulsion intact.

    •    Make sure to whisk in the butter over very low heat or off the heat if the pan is getting too hot; if the heat is too high, the butter will melt too quickly, and the sauce will not thicken properly.



This great family recipe is thanks to The Spruce Eats at https://www.thespruceeats.com/baked-chilean-sea-bass-3058415

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