SEASONS SEABASS

“Algarve tomatoes are the best, after an hour in the BBQ on a low heat they’re transformed into something sweet and delicious. Clean sea water makes the perfect dressing for fish as its salty and crisp and true to the ways of preserving seafood and fish from the market. Out top tip is Crispy skin is winning at grilling…Plenty of olive oil and straight on a hot grill.” 

Henry Herbert

Ingredients

Serves 4

  • 750g Medium sized tomatoes
  • Glug local olive oil
  • 3 Cloves of garlic - finely diced
  • Big sprig of fresh thyme - taken from the stork
  • 1tbsp Golden caster sugar
  • Big pinch of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  • 4 Freshest Seabass - gutted and clean.
  • Pinch of sea salt and pepper
  • 2 Unwaxed lemons - the zest of and finely chopped
  • 2 Cloves of garlic - very, very finely chopped
  • 2tbsp Fresh oregano - very finely chopped
  • 1tbsp Fresh parsley - also finely chopped
  • 750g Best local ripe tomatoes
  • Small bucket of clean sea water

method

First make the confit tomatoes. Quarter the 750g of medium sized tomatoes and with a teaspoon scoop out and compost/discard the seeds. Lay the tomato quarters on the tray and drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle over the top the diced garlic, thyme, sugar, salt and pepper.

Give the tray of tomatoes a blast of heat on the bbq or under a grill for 5 minutes or until the tips and edges of the tomatoes start to char. Then slowly and gently roast the tomatoes at 150ºC for 50 minutes until they have dried just a bit, intensifying the rich flavour. Keep the confit tomatoes hot for serving.

Now make the gremolata, if you have a mini blender then use that, otherwise chop the lemon zest, garlic, oregano and parsley as fine as possible and mix together in a small serving bowl.

To make the sea water dressing, put a cup of sea water into a pan and boil for 2 minutes, then take off the heat and add the juice from the two zested lemons, a glug of olive oil and a teaspoon of sugar. Put into a jam jar, shake together and leave to cool.

Grilling the seabass, lightly brush the fish with olive oil and then season with salt and pepper. Grill over a medium to high heat [coals should have a white ash on them and be glowing, not flaming]. 3 minutes on each side or until the skin is crispy and the flesh is just cooked.

To assemble, slice the best local tomatoes and arranging them on the plate together with the hot comfit tomatoes, shake then pour over a little of the sea water dressing and top with first the grilled seabass and finally a spoon of the gremolata sprinkled over the top.

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