Total preparation time:
1 Whole sea bass weighing 700g to 1kg
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Red onion cut into half-moons (200g)
1 Bell pepper seeded and cut into rounds (150g)
1 Tomato cut into rounds (250g)
3 Red potatoes peeled and cut into rounds (370g)
10 Baby Portobello mushrooms halved (140g)
½ Moroccan preserved lemon cored and cut into wedges
3 Bay leaves
Fish seasoning – “Tsharmyla”-
¼ Cup finely chopped cilantro (12g)
¼ Cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley (12g)
5 Garlic cloves minced (10g)
1 Lemon juiced (¼ cup )
2 Teaspoons of oregano
½ Teaspoon black pepper
1 Teaspoon cumin
2 Teaspoons paprika
2 Bay leaves
½ Teaspoon curcumas
4 Teaspoons Olive oil
1/3 Cup water
Pour 1 Tablespoon of olive oil in the fish Tagine (or your oven safe dish) and throw in the onion. If you will use the oven, set it on bake, and pre-heat it at 350 degrees.
If you will cook the fish on the stove in a Tagine, let it preheat on low for 15 minutes.
If you will use any other pot with lid to cook the fish on the stove, you don’t need to pre-heat the pot.
Make four cuts on one side of the fish, without cutting all the way through the bones, to allow the spices to get into the fish. Lay the fish on the other side, over the onions
Fish “sharmoula” : In a mortar, combine all of the spices with the minced garlic, parsley, cilantro, lemon juiced and olive oil. Pound the mixture for 5 minutes until it thickens. Transfer it to a bowl and add 1/3 cup of water
If you are not using a mortar, mix all the spices, herbs, lemon juice and water together in a bowl. Use about 4 Tablespoon of the mixture to rub the fish.
Arrange the potatoes and mushrooms around the fish. Place the bell peppers, tomatoes, lemon wedges and bay leaves on top of the fish.
Place the bay leaves on the sides of the fish. Remove the pulp of the preserved lemon and place the rind on top of the fish.
Pour the remaining spice and herb mixture over everything, then place the dish in the oven without lid for 30 minutes at 400 degrees, or cover it with a lid and cook it on the stove for 30 to 40 minutes on medium heat.
P.S. Do not pre-heat the oven if you are using a fish Tagine, clay dishes are very sensitive to temperature changes. Place the tagine in a cool oven and allow it to heat progressively.
If your vegetables release a lot of juice and you have a lot of broth in the Tagine, feel free to scoop out some with the spoon before serving, but do not extend the cooking time, as the fish might be overcooked.
If you have a convection oven, it is better to not use the convection option when cooking the fish Tagine.