We do not eat enough fish. I’m not sure why as I absolutely adore it and every time I cook it I vow to do it more often. I am a huge fan of fish with Mediterranean flavours as I just think they compliment each other beautifully. Salty capers and olives with sweet baby tomatoes and punchy fresh herbs. This dish is a real play on a Salad Nicoise with golden roast potatoes and chargrilled greens. Traditionally a Nicoise salad uses tuna and green beans but I couldn’t go past this sustainably caught Barramundi when I went to the fish shop and I am a little obsessed with chargrilling zucchini and broccolini at the moment. Anyway, it was bloody delicious and totally share worthy.
Prep time: 20 Minutes
Cooking time: 30 Minutes
$$ Medium Budget
Extra virgin olive oil for frying and drizzling
4 x 150gm Barramundi fillets, skin on and boned
4 medium potatoes, cut into chunks
4 small zucchini’s, halved lengthways
1 bunch of broccolini, ends trimmed and blanched in boiling water for 2 minutes, then drained
1 punnet of assorted grape tomatoes, sliced randomly
1/2 a cup of pitted kalamata olives, halved
1 tbs of capers, roughly chopped
2 anchovy fillets, finely sliced
1/2 a red onion, very finely diced
2 tbs of freshly chopped parsley
1 tbs of finely chopped dill
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
2 lemons, halved for garnish
Sea salt and pepper
Chilli oil for drizzling (optional but available in all supermarkets)
Baby herbs for garnish or freshly chopped parsley
To ensure really crispy Barramundi skin, pat the fish dry with paper towel and place on a plate in the fridge for about 30 minutes, uncovered to allow the skin to dry out.
Place the potato chunks in a pot of water and bring to the boil for about 5 minutes or until just tender when pierced with a knife.
Preheat the oven to 200°C and when the potatoes are tender, drain all liquid and place on a lined tray. Give them a good drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, season with salt and pepper and bake for approximately 15-20 minutes or until golden.
Place the tomatoes, anchovies, capers, olives, red onion and herbs in a bowl. Drizzle with a little olive oil and dress with the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Toss to combine and set aside.
Heat a griddle pan to nice and hot and place the zucchini halves, flesh side down in the pan. Cook on either side for 5 minutes or until they have lovely chargrilled lines and are cooked through. Pop them on a tray and keep warm in the oven while you cook the broccolini, in the griddle pan for about 3 minutes either side. In the same pan, cook the lemon halves, flesh side down for a couple of minutes. Keep all the veggies warm in the oven while you cook the Barramundi.
Heat a frypan to nice and hot. Drizzle the fish with a little oil and season the skin with salt and pepper. Place the Barramundi in the hot pan, skin side down and when you put it in the pan, hold the fish down to stop the skin from curling up. This will ensure a nice even cook and crispy skin. You can use a plate to do this and just put some pressure on the middle of the plate for a minute or so. Cook the fish for 3-4 minutes either side, or until the sides of the fish are opaque. You can actually see the fish cooking by watching the sides. If the sides are pink, the fish is not cooked all the way through, if they are all white, it is cooked.
Remove the potatoes and veggies from the oven. Dress the greens with a little olive oil and season with a little salt and pepper. Arrange the potatoes and greens randomly on each plate and divide the salsa among each plate. Top with the crispy skinned Barramundi, skin side up and scatter over baby herbs or chopped parsley. Serve with lemon wedges and drizzle with a little chilli oil for an extra kick.
Leftover Olives? You may like to cook this….