This recipe is a loose adaptation of Whole Roasted Snapper with Harissa and Sun Gold Tomatoes from another one of my new cookbooks, Dining In by Alison Roman. Alison Roman happens to be one of my favorite food writers and this gorgeous cookbook is a collection of her “highly cookable recipes.” I put that in quotes because as you can see from the original recipe I chose to dive in with, I don’t necessary consider whole snapper a highly cookable fish for most of us. Yes, it’s easy but is it a typical weeknight “go-to?” Not so much. With that said, I think that this cookbook is filled with interesting, innovative, straight-forward recipes all with a little twist that make them memorable. The vegetable section alone has me curious about roasting baby carrots with turmeric and butter-tossing radishes, for example.
The Whole Roasted Snapper with Harissa and Sun Gold Tomatoes caught my attention because of its simplicity and departure from my usual Asian tendencies with seafood. I am slightly embarrassed to admit that I substituted the gorgeous whole snapper with the much maligned tilapia (I buy fresh tilapia at Costco and take it home to individually wrap and freeze. I find this tilapia to be meaty and delicious–as opposed to the varieties sold already frozen. I eat it in moderation and hope that doesn’t make me a bad person.) You could very easily use any flaky white fish in this recipe, and frankly I don’t see why it wouldn’t be delicious with salmon or even a meatier fish like swordfish (cooking times would need to be adjusted).
So go ahead and give this recipe for Flaky White Fish with Harissa and Cherry Tomatoes a try. It is incredibly easy (as in, six ingredients easy–with three of the six being mentioned in the recipe title), cooks entirely on a sheet pan, and is bursting with flavor. I served it alongside parsley flecked farro and Swiss chard sautéed with garlic and lemon. Delicious. Enjoy!
- 2 Tbls harissa
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 Tbls olive oil
- 2-4 white fish fillets
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 pints cherry tomatoes
- 1 lemon, lime or orange halved for squeezing (I used lemon)
- Preheat oven to 500F.
- Combine the harissa, garlic, and olive oil in a medium bowl.
- Season fish with kosher salt and pepper.
- Rub some harissa mixture on both sides of the fish fillets.
- Place the fish on a rimmed baking sheet.
- Toss tomatoes with the remaining harissa mixture and scatter them around the fish.
- Place in the oven and roast until the fish is cooked through and the tomatoes have burst and are starting to caramelize, about 10 minutes.
- Remove the fish from the oven and serve topped with tomatoes and with citrus juice squeezed over everything.