It has taken me some time to get into this book Falastin by Sami Tammy and Tara Wigley both from the Ottolenghi tribe of cooks. I’ve now made this dish several times and it is delicious and easy.
The combination of fish and tahini is one we find hard to resist, but this works just as well without the tahini sauce if you’re looking for a shortcut or want to keep the focus on the lemon. Either way, this is as close to fast food as you can get. It’s 15 minute meal to make, beginning to end. Possibly even less time to to eat.
If you are using the tahini sauce, make the whole quantity of the master recipe it keeps in the fridge for about 4 days and is lovely to have around to drizzle over all sorts of roasted vegetables, meat, fish and salads.
Any other meaty white fish works just as well here: Sea Bass, Halibut or even Salmon.
60ml olive oil
4 garlic cloves, crushed
50g coriander, finely chopped
21/2 tsp fish spice mix ( see below)
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
4 large cod loin I or another sustainably sourced white fish) skin on ( about 700g)
4 large fresh bay leaves
2 lemons cut one into 8 very thin slices and quarter the other lengthways, into wedges, to serve
About 4 tbsp tahini sauce ( see below)
Makes just over 2 tbsp
2 tp ground cardamom
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp ground turmeric
Makes 1 medium jar
150 g tahini
2tbsp lemon juice
1 garlic clove, crushed
Mix together all the ingredients, along with 120m of water and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. It is too runny, add a bit more tahini, If it is too thick, add a bit more lemon juice or water. You want the consistency to be like that of a smooth runny nut butter. It will thicken up when left to sit around, so just give it a stir handsome more lemon juice or water every time you use it.
Pre heat the oven to 250 C fan
Put 2 tablespoons of oil into a small saucepan and place on a medium-low heat. Add the crushed garlic and cook for 10 seconds, then add the coriander, fish spice mix, chilli flakes, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and a grind of back pepper. Cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring frequently, for the garlic to really soften, then remove from the heat.
Place the cod in a parchment-lined roasting dish, skin side down, and brush with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper then spoon the coriander mix on top of each fillet. Spread it out so that the whole top is covered, then top each one with a bay leaf, if using, along with 2 slices of lemon. Roast for 7-8 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through. Serve at once, with about a tablespoon of tahini sauce drizzled over, if using and a wedge of lemon alongside.
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