Mediterranean Style Whole Roasted Fish

From issue #3.
Photography by Photography by Becky Nunes.
Mediterranean Style Whole Roasted Fish

Serves: 6


12 vine ripened tomatoes
150ml olive oil
800g waxy potatoes
2-3 bulbs fennel
3 cloves garlic
¼ cup fresh, soft breadcrumbs
½ cup basil leaves
1 ½ kg whole snapper, gutted and scaled
1 lemon, sliced
20 black olives
¼ teaspoon saffron threads, toasted
150ml dry white wine
sea salt and freshly ground pepper


Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Cut the tomatoes in half and pack them into a shallow, ovenproof dish, cut side up. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle over 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Roast for 30 minutes. Peel the potatoes and slice 1 cm thick. Parboil for 8 minutes. Drain and reserve. Trim and slice the fennel 1 cm thick. Chop the garlic and rub together with the breadcrumbs.

Oil the bottom of a roasting dish and cover with alternating slices of potato and fennel to form a single layer. Brush with oil, season and arrange the basil leaves along the centre. Season the cavity of the fish and fill with lemon slices. Lay it on top of the basil. Arrange the roast tomatoes around the edges and scatter the olives on top of them.

Add the saffron to the wine, mix with the remaining olive oil and pour over the fish. Season with salt and pepper, scatter over the garlic breadcrumbs and moisten with a little more oil. Roast for approximately 20 minutes or until the fish flakes easily off the bone. Serves 6