Brown butter sea bass with tangerine dipping sauce and lots of herbs


First published in 2022
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Ixta says: 'Don’t be put off by the longish ingredients list and method. Read through it once and you’ll realise this recipe is actually very straightforward and requires very little hands-on cooking. This is a great interactive sharing dish; stuff pieces of fish into the lettuce leaves (fresh corn tortillas would be great, too), top with the herbs and dipping sauce and let it trickle down your wrists as you eat with your hands. You’ll need four tangerines and two limes in total for this recipe.'




Sea bass

Citrus butter

Tangerine dipping sauce

To serve


Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 6


Pat the sea bass with kitchen towel to make sure it’s as dry as possible

  • 1 sea bass, (around 800g, and at room temperature)

Transfer the sea bass to a 33 x 26cm non-stick high-sided baking tray, arranging it diagonally, so it fits. The tray shouldn’t be much bigger than the fish, otherwise the citrus butter will burn. Season the cavity with ¼ teaspoon of fine salt, then stuff with the rosemary and spring onions


Put all the ingredients for the citrus butter into a small saucepan and place on a medium heat until the butter has melted. Pour over and around the fish


Bake for 14 minutes (or longer if your fish is larger than 800g)


Baste the fish well and turn the oven to the highest grill setting. Grill on the top shelf of the oven for 4–6 minutes, or until the skin begins to bubble and crisp. Keep a close eye, as some grills are much hotter than others


While the fish is cooking, make the tangerine dipping sauce. Put the pul biber, garlic, ginger, tomato purée/paste and fine salt into a mortar and pound with a pestle to a rough paste


Heat the oil in a small saucepan on a medium heat for 1 minute, then pour the hot oil into the mortar

  • 1 1/2 tbsp of mild olive oil

Stir together, then add the chopped tomatoes, tangerine juice, lime juice and fish sauce


Once cooked, transfer the sea bass to a large platter with the browned citrus butter. Discard the garlic skins


Serve with the lettuce and soft herbs to make parcels with, and the dipping sauce and lime wedges alongside

First published in 2022
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