Recipe courtesy of Escopazzo

Pacific Halibut with Caramelized Fennel, Black Olives, Orange Zest, and Dill

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 25 min
  • Prep: 10 min
  • Cook: 15 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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1 large fennel bulb, sliced

2 cups sambuca or anisette

1 lemon, juiced

Pinch red pepper flakes


1/8 teaspoon orange zest

1/2 cup chopped kalamata olives

1/2 tablespoon fresh chopped dill

1 teaspoon butter

4 (6-ounce) halibut fillets or any white fish

Freshly ground black pepper

Extra-virgin olive oil


  1. In a saute pan add the sliced fennel and the sambuca. Cook's Note: Pour the liqueur into the pan when the fire is off, as it is very flammable. Put the pan over low heat, and let the sambuca ignite. Allow the alcohol to evaporate and cook at medium heat until the liqueur begins to caramelize. At this point it will start to bubble. Add the lemon juice, red pepper flakes, salt, to taste, the orange zest, the olives, and dill. Cook for a couple of minutes, and then stir in a teaspoon of butter to give the sauce a little creaminess. Set aside. 
  2. Score the fish fillets, cut them in half and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Coat a saute pan, over medium heat, with extra-virgin olive oil and add the fillets, skin side down. Allow to cook for 3 to 5 minutes. 
  3. Remove from the heat. 
  4. To serve: Put some of the fennel sauce in the center of each serving dish and top with 2 pieces of the fish.
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