Salt-Baked Sea Bass

Peel back the golden crust on Theo Randall's oven-baked fish to reveal the succulent fillets, served with spinach and cannellini beans
By Theo Randall
Salt-Baked Sea Bass
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 2
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes plus 10 mins cooling time
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

For the sea bass

  • 2 kg coarse sea salt
  • 125 ml water
  • 1 kg sea bass, gutted but not scaled
  • 2 sprigs marjoram
  • 1 lemon, juice only

For the cannellini beans

  • 1x 400g can cannellini beans, drained
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 100 g cherry tomatoes, halved and seeds removed
  • small bunch basil

For the spinach

  • 250 g baby spinach
  • olive oil

To serve

  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges
  • 1 bunch parsley

Method

1. For the sea bass: preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6.

2. Mix the salt and water together to form a thick paste. Place half of this paste in the bottom of a baking tray in a similar but slightly larger shape to the fish. Put the sea bass on the top of the salt base, arrange the marjoram on top and squeeze over the lemon. Mould the remaining salt around the fish, completely encasing it.

3. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove the sea bass from the oven (the salt should form a very hard crust) and leave to cool for 10 minutes.

4. For the spinach: bring a large pan of water to the boil, add the spinach and blanch for 1 minute. Drain well and return the spinach to the pan. Season with salt and pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil, keep warm over a low heat.

5. For the cannellini beans: put the beans in a small pan with the olive oil and warm through. Add the tomatoes and basil and season with salt and pepper. Warm through.

6. To serve: cut into salt crust, remove the top and take out the baked fish. Peel off the skin and carefully take the fillets off the bones. Serve alongside the spinach and cannellini beans, with a squeeze of lemon and a garnish of parsley.

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