Salt-baked fish. The first thing that comes to mind is, “Will it be salty?” The answer is, NO. You have a perfectly seasoned, flavored, juicy fish that is just waiting to be devoured. I love pickling and wanted an “island” vibe with this dish so decided to do escovitch veggies. The veggies were perfectly crisp, offering the right amount of acidity for the fish.
This has been a technique I’ve been wanting to try for ages. The whole point of me starting this blog was to get back to cooking. The best way to grow and learn is to get out of your comfort zone. The fish becomes encased in this thick salt crust which causes the fish to steam and seal in its juices. I decided to add more flavor by toasting some coriander and mixing it with the salt. The fish was stuffed with orange slices, scallions, and fresh thyme. The flavor was spot on. Not over-powering but mild and noticeable.
The Escovitch veggies consist of red, orange, and yellow bell peppers. Red onion, slices of garlic, minced ginger, and a scotch bonnet pepper. If you are sensitive to heat, cut it in half or use a jalapeno or serrano chile.
Make sure to prep the veggies a few hours before you cook your fish. The fish only takes 30 minutes in the oven! You want to pickle to penetrate your veggies and marinate. This is a great recipe and fun to tackle. I had fun cracking the salt crust and the perfume of the coriander, orange, and thyme smelled great! Would love to hear how this recipe turned out for y’all! Happy eating!
Salt Baked Fish With Escovitch Veggies Recipe
For the Escovitch Veggies:
- 5 allspice berries
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
- 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 small red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 small orange bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 small yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
- juice of 1 lime
- 3 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
For the Salt-Baked Fish:
- 1-2 lb whole fish I used a red snapper that was 1.5lbs
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 2 1/2 cups kosher salt
- 2 orange slices
- a few springs of fresh thyme
- 1 green onion
Preparing the Escovitch Veggies:
- Over medium heat, toast allspice and coriander. Add olive oil and then ginger and garlic. Cook for 2 minutes. Add apple cider vinegar, sugar, salt and bring to a boil.
- Once to a boil, add veggies and cook for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and add lime juice and cilantro. Cool down and refrigerate.
Baking the Salt-Baked Fish:
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- Stuff fish with orange, green onions, and thyme. Place aside.
- Over medium heat in a skillet, toast coriander seeds for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and grind them up or smash them with the side of your knife. Pressing down on the blade to crush seeds. Combine with salt. Place egg whites in a bowl whisk them to soft peaks and stir in the salt mixture.
- Line a piece of parchment paper or foil on a large baking pan and pour half of the salt mixture on the bottom. Place fish on top and pour the rest of the mixture of the fish. Press and pat down to form a covering.
- Place in oven and bake for 30 minutes.
- Crack the crust and skin and fillet the fish. Serve with the pickled veggies and some of the pickling liquid.