Whole Roasted Sea Bream

Sea Bream 2

Top restaurants serve the entire fish, so why would you do any less in your kitchen? Be brave and give this a try; I promise it is well worth it. I actually gutted and scaled the fish myself, it really wasn’t that hard (see video link below). However, if the thought of gutting or scaling a fish freaks you out, just ask the guy/gal at the fish counter to do it for you. If you can’t find sea bream you can substitute sea bass or rainbow trout…just be sure to adjust cooking time.

2 Sea Bream (1 pound each), gutted and scaled
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 small lemon, thinly sliced
4 sprigs fresh Italian parsley
6 springs fresh thyme
2 tablespoons melted ghee
1 lemon, but into wedges

Preparing the fish:

How to Clean, Descale, and Gut a Fresh Fish

Cooking the fish:
1.) Prepare the boiler with the oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the heating element. Place a non coated heavy-duty baking sheet on the rack. You want to get the tray red hot prior to placing the fish on it.
2.) Pat draw the exterior and interior of the fish with paper towels. Using a sharp knife or filet knife, cut three evenly spaced slits in the flesh of both slides (look at my picture if you’re not sure). Be sure to cut deeply, all the way down to the bone.
3.) Generously season the fish inside and out with salt and pepper.Sea Bream 1
4.) Shingle the lemon slices so that they overlap slightly, and tuck them into the cavity of the fish along with the herbs. It’s ok if they are sticking out a little, stuff that fish full.
5.) Bush 1 tablespoon of ghee onto the pan, and place the fish on the hot ghee. The skin should sizzle as soon as it hits the pan. If it not sizzle, don’t worry it will still turn out alright. Brush the remaining tablespoon of ghee on the topside of the fish.
6.) Broil the fish 3-5 minutes or until the skin is blistering on the top. Carefully flip the fish with a wide spatula or two if you don’t have a big one. Continue cooking for another two minutes or until cooked through. The skin should be brown and crispy, and the tender flesh should flake off the bone easily.
7.) Remove the fish from the oven, and rest for 5 minutes. Discard the herb and lemon slices, and serve the whole fish with fresh lemon wedges.  I left the herbs and lemon in, up to you.

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