Oven baked Tsipoura (Gilthead Sea Bream)

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The Sea Bream family of fishes are great for eating. The flesh is firm, white, has a delicate taste and falls off the bone with ease. These characteristics make for a great fish eating experience. The finest of the Bream family is what the Greeks call Tsipoura (the bigger fish in the middle.) I would say that it is the most popular fish here, due to it’s affordability and taste. Any fish taverna worth it’s salt has Tsipoura front and centre on the menu. I have eaten this fish in just about every way possible, but my favourite is baked in the oven with lemon. There is no greater experience than eating Tsipoura by the sea on a hot summer evening.
What you need:
  • Tsipoura. You need one medium sized fish per person (you could substitute Bass or Red Snapper)
  • 2-3 lemons
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 1 sweet red onion
  • 2 cloves smashed garlic
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 handful of Kalamata olives (you can substitute any that you have on hand)
  • 1 bunch of parsley rough chopped
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How it’s done:

  • Clean and scale the fish (or have your fishmonger do that for you.)
  • Gently score the fish on each side with an X pattern.
  • Caramelize the onions, garlic and olives with the sugar in a little olive oil.
  • Cut one of the lemons into wedges.
  • Stuff each fish with a lemon wedge, some of the parsley and season with a little salt.
  • Cut the other lemons into slices.
  • Lay the fish in an oven proof pan, cover with lemon slices, and surround  the fish with the onion mixture and the rest of the parsley.
  • Cover with a little foil and cook for about 20 minutes at 200C.
  • After 20 minutes remove foil and cook for another 10 minutes or so (this depends on the fish.)
  • Season with salt and pepper. Enjoy!
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