Halibut fillets get Mediterranean flavoring


October 10, 2007|By Carol Mighton Haddix | Carol Mighton Haddix,Chicago Tribune

Olives and fennel are two common ingredients of the Mediterranean region. I love to combine them with fresh fish, and though we may not get the same species found in that sun-dappled area of the world, we have our choice of plenty from our own coasts.

I find halibut works well with these simple flavors, but red snapper or even fresh-water trout can shine here.

Team the dish with ripe tomatoes, tossed in a salad, and a lemon tart from the bakery.

Carol Mighton Haddix is food editor of the Chicago Tribune, which provided the recipe analysis.

Halibut With Fennel, Olives and Thyme

Makes 2 servings -- Total time: 35 minutes

2 fillets halibut or other firm white fish

1 teaspoon dried thyme (divided use)

1/2 teaspoon salt (divided use)

freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 bulb fennel, cored, thinly sliced, fronds chopped

1/2 cup pitted green or black olives, chopped

juice of 1/2 lemon

Sprinkle halibut on all sides with 1/2 teaspoon of the thyme, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt and pepper to taste; set aside.

Heat olive oil in heavy skillet over medium heat; add fennel slices. Cook, stirring, until fennel softens, about 5 minutes. Stir in olives. Season with remaining thyme and salt and pepper to taste. Push fennel and olives to one side of the skillet.

Add halibut; cook until lightly colored on 1 side, about 3 minutes. Turn; cover skillet. Cook until fish is almost cooked through, about 7 minutes. Sprinkle fish and fennel with lemon juice. Garnish with fennel fronds.

Per serving: 541 calories, 43 grams fat, 7 grams saturated fat, 84 milligrams cholesterol, 12 grams carbohydrate, 28 grams protein, 1,083 milligrams sodium, 5 grams fiber


Halibut With Fennel, Olives and Thyme

Steamed baby red potatoes

Tomato-and-onion salad

Lemon tart

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