Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Olive Oil Poached Halibut

I made this on Sunday evening - and it was AMAZING.  I had never tried poaching fish in olive oil, but had bought a couple of beautiful halibut fillets from the fish market and figured - why not?  I had been looking at various recipes for years - and they all seem about the same - season the fish, place in baking dish - cover with about 2 cups of olive oil (sometimes a bit more - sometimes a bit less) - bake on 250 for approximately 1 to 1 1/4 hours until fish flakes easily.   Note: I was looking at the recipe in Gourmet Cookbook when I was making this for temperatures/technique - my recipe is modified slightly to accommodate family's tastes, what I had on hand, etc.

Truth be told, the children didn't like it that much (they were also tired) - but I loved it.  I flaked the leftovers with some of the olive oil and have been using it this week for sandwiches for work - much like tuna. 

2 lbs Halibut Fillet
2 lemons sliced thinly
2 cups fresh basil and parsley (you can use other fragrant fresh herbs - I like these 2 together - also the 2 cups is an estimate - I just grabbed big handfuls from the garden)  - chopped coarsely
salt and pepper to taste (if you are using something like halibut, be somewhat generous since this is a relatively mild fish
2 cups olive oil

1. Preheat oven to 250.
2. Season the fish with salt and pepper. 
3. Place 1 layer of lemon slices in the bottom of a baking dish (I used a 9 inch square brownie pan.  You want to use something between 8 and 9 inch square so the olive oil covers the fish)
4. Place seasoned fish on top of lemon.  Cover with rest of lemon slices and chopped fresh basil and parsley.
5. Cover pan with tin foil.
6. Bake in center of oven for between 1 and 1 1/4 hours or until it starts to flake easily.  (Don't forget that the fish will continue to cook once it is removed - so even if it is still slightly underdone, it should be finished by the time you get to the table.)
7. Remove fish from olive oil and serve with some of the oil spooned over the top.

I served it with paparadelle and green beans/green salad.