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Recipes // Main Dish Seafood // Seared Wild Striped Bass

Seared Wild Striped Bass

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By Anne Burrell

Serves: 4
Time: About 45 minutes

When I was a kid, even in the dead of winter we would shovel a path outside so we could throw a fish on the grill.  Then we would come in from the icy air, take off our coats, warm up, and have a smoky, crispy, tender fish with a refreshing salad of bitter greens-it was enough to make me forget I was hoping for a snow day!  To make life a bit easier for those of you in snowy regions, I've tweaked this recipe so you can sear the fish inside and still get that yummy combo of flavors-all year round!

Ingredients:

  • 4 6-ounce wild striped bass fillets, skin on
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper
  • 1 fennel bulb, shaved on a mandolin
  • 2 pink grapefruit, supreme over a bowl to catch all the juices
  • 1 bunch dandelion greens, cut crosswise into 1-inch ribbons
  • ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
  • Big fat finishing oil

Directions:

  1. Pat the skin of the fish dry with a paper towel and let it sit out for 15 to 20 minutes to come to room temperature.
  2. Coat a large sauté pan generously with olive oil and bring it to high heat. While the pan is heating up, coat the bottom of a smaller sauté pan lightly with olive oil and set it aside- CLEARLY upside down!
  3. Preheat the oven to 250°F.
  4. Season the fish generously with salt. Place the fish skin side down in the heated pan and immediately place the smaller sauté© pan directly on top of the fish. Gently press it down. This will keep the fish skin directly in contact with the pan so it will get really crispy. REMEMBER to oil the bottom of the second pan or the fish will stick to it. Let the fish cook this way for 2 to 3 minutes. If the oil is smoking, turn down the heat to medium. Cook the fish for another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the fish from the sauté© pan to a baking sheet and place in the oven. You want the fish cooked through but not dry.
  5. Ditch the oil from the pan, coat the pan with fresh oil, and add the garlic and crushed red pepper. Over medium heat, cook the garlic until it is golden and very aromatic, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove and discard the garlic-it has fulfilled its garlic destiny. Thank YOU for coming!
  6. Add the fennel to the pan and season with salt. Continue cooking until it begins to soften and wilt. Add the juice from the grapefruit and turn off the heat.
  7. Add the grapefruit supremes, dandelion greens, and red onion. Toss to combine and season with more salt as needed. Taste to make sure it is delicious.
  8. To serve, place a mound of the fennel mixture in the center of each serving plate. Nestle a fish fillet into each mound and spoon any of the excess juice over each piece of fish. Drizzle each plate with a few drops of big fat finishing oil.
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