Herb-Stuffed Roast Arctic Char

Total Time:
50 min
25 min
25 min

4 servings

  • 3 sprigs sage
  • 3 sprigs parsley
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 4 wide strips lemon zest (removed with a vegetable peeler)
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1 3 -pound whole arctic char, scaled, butterflied, cleaned and deboned
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Remove the leaves from 2 sage sprigs, 1 parsley sprig, all of the thyme sprigs and the rosemary; finely chop along with the lemon zest. Transfer to a small bowl and stir in the garlic and 1 tablespoon olive oil to make a paste; set aside.

  • Brush a rimmed baking sheet with olive oil. Run the back of a knife over the skin of the fish to remove any excess moisture; pat dry inside and out. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Cut 4 slits through the skin on each side of the fish with a sharp knife; rub inside and out with 1 tablespoon olive oil, making sure to get inside the slits. Season the fish inside and out with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; spread the herb paste all over the inside.

  • Roast until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part reaches 130 degrees F to 135 degrees F, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest 5 minutes before slicing.

  • Meanwhile, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a small skillet over medium-high heat. Remove the leaves from the remaining 1 sage sprig and 2 parsley sprigs; add to the hot oil and cook, stirring, until crisp, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Drain on paper towels and season with salt.

  • Photograph by Con Poulos

Buy: When you're planning to present a whole fish at the table, ask your fish seller to debone it first (leaving the head and tail intact). You won't have to worry about filleting in front of everyone; you can just cut it into pieces.

Roast: Many recipes say to cook fish until it flakes easily with a fork, but that can be too late. Instead, keep a close eye on the temperature and look for just-opaque flesh.

Carve: Use two long spatulas to transfer the fish to a cutting board or platter. Cut off the head and tail and slice crosswise.

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