Friday, September 25, 2015

Pan Seared Branzino with Olives, Capers and Tomatoes

Pan Seared Branzino

Who's afraid of the big bad branzino?

Certainly not me.

I was lucky enough to have grown up with a dad that fished and hunted.  So eating wild game or cleaning and cooking a whole fish was something that was done regularly at my house.  

I vividly remember my father giving me a pile of fish to scale and being proud when he actually found a few where I hadn't missed any scales.  I lived for him to say "good job Anna".

He did the gutting of course.

When I saw whole branzino on sale at the market I jumped at the chance to make a luxury meal for myself while my daughter was at school.  Let's just saw the little one would have wanted no parts of a dinner that was staring back at her.

I hope this post and video tutorial help lessen any fear you might be harboring when it comes to tackling a whole fish.

Pan Seared Branzino with Olives, Capers and Tomatoes
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 12 -14 min
Servings: 1

  • 1 whole branzino (scaled and gutted)
  • 3 slices of lemon
  • fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced (divided 1&1)
  • 10-15 grape tomatoes, halved
  • 10 Kalamata olives, halved
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 10 green olives, halved
  • 1 tbsp butter

Video Tutorial

  1. Salt and pepper both the exterior and interior cavity then stuff the fish with a the lemon slices, parsley, and one clove of garlic  chopped into large pieces.
  2. To pan fry, in a very large nonstick skillet over a medium high heat add about a tablespoon of oil before carefully lowering the fish into the pan so that your lemon slices don’t fall out.
  3. Fry for 6-7 minutes on the first side then flip the fish and add the butter, olives, tomatoes, capers and garlic then saute covered over a medium heat for 6-7 minutes.
  4. When you uncover the fish if the pan looks a little dry add a few tablespoon of water and stir to ensure everything looks glossy then serve.
  5. I served mined next to a pile of creamy stone ground polenta mixed with spinach and garlic cause then spooned the olive tomato caper relish over both the fish and side dish.

Notes: This recipe is written starting with a whole cleaned branzino.  If you need instruction on how to clean the fish be sure to watch the video tutorial above when I give a comprehensive demonstration.

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