There are times when I seriously considered reaching out to "Peapod"- the decade old convenience of online shopping at Giant for my weekly shopping, on days when I cannot make the trip down to the store. As far as I am concerned, I have this habit of examining my produce before I decide how I want to use it to make a special dish. Maybe I am a bit old-fashioned, but I prefer not to make a list or have Peapod deliver my groceries to the front door. This means that I must juggle my time to run to a Farmer's Market, Asian Supermarket, American Grocery and finally stop by the Indian Store at the same time come up with the weekly Menu. Don't get me wrong.....I do strongly support Peapod for being such a wonderful service for those who are unable to drive or for those elderly folks in a retirement home. On the other hand, I am mortified by the idea of consuming any meat or vegetables that I have not selected myself--especially seafood when I am able to go out to buy them myself. Sometimes the seabass or red snapper at our fish market may be past its prime and then I will pass on the fish and go for something else. This time, I selected a whole White fish that looked fresh from the sea, asked the fish monger to take the head off and clean the belly to see if I could roast it in the oven. I was so surprised at how amazing it turned out with just a few ingredients and loads of flavor!! The recipe was just concocted in my mind with a bunch of fresh rosemary and good old lemon. I know I will be making this all over again because it was demolished at the dinner table.
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 whole White Fish or any other fish, cleaned, scaled
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon, halved
1/2 small onion, chopped
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon fennel seeds crushed
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1 small garlic clove, minced
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Line a heavy large baking sheet with foil. Oil the foil and fish with 1 tablespoon of oil. Place the fish atop the foil. Sprinkle the fish cavity and all over with salt and pepper. Squeeze 1/2 of the lemon inside the fish cavity. Fill the cavity with the onion, lemon slices and rosemary sprigs. Bake until the fish is just cooked through at the bone, about 40 minutes. Throw in some sliced red peppers, onion wedges and zuchini slices to serve with the fish and prepare a side of instant cousous.
Meanwhile, squeeze the remaining lemon 1/2 into a small bowl. Whisk in the crushed fennel, rosemary, and garlic. Gradually whisk in the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil. Season the lemon sauce, to taste, with salt and pepper.
Lift the fish backbone from the bottom fillets (the backbone and head should come off together easily), and discard.