Sea Bass with Fennel and Olives
- 7 (8-ounce) sea bass fillets
- 2 handfuls purple and green basil and flat-leaf parsley, finely sliced
- Good extra-virgin olive oil
- Maldon sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 or 2 heads fennel, halved and finely sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely sliced
- 4 large handfuls green and red chard, stalks finely sliced
- For the sauce:
- 1 clove garlic, finely sliced
- 4 to 6 anchovy fillets
- 4 good tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 large handfuls of small black olives, stones removed
- 3 ounces half-and-half
- Handful of flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
Line a tray with greaseproof paper and rub it with olive oil. Score the skin side of the fish fillets (about halfway through the fish) and stuff with the herbs. Place the fish, skin side up, on the tray and cover with a few good lugs of olive oil and salt and pepper. Broil for 5 to 7 minutes until skin is crisp and fish is cooked through.
Gently fry the fennel and garlic with a pinch of salt in a good lug of olive oil, until softened and lightly coloured. Add the chard, with another pinch of salt, and cook until the stalks are soft.For the sauce:
To make the sauce, gently fry the garlic and anchovies in the olive oil until soft. Chop half the olives, keeping the other half whole and add these to the garlic and anchovies. Fry for another minute. Remove from the heat and add the cream and parsley. Season with a little pepper and add some more olive oil. Serve the fish and vegetables with the warm sauce poured over the top.
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