Roasted Branzino with Rosemary Potatoes

I don’t usually panic when cooking. I always try and tell myself, “Ben, if you botch this dish, then you can always rummage through the fridge for something else, and learn from your royal screw up.” I must admit though, that I did have a tad, eensey weensey bit of panic in me when cooking this dish.

The distress wasn’t caused by the labor of preparing the dish. In fact, this Branzino recipe is very simple. I was

Branzino

Branzino

more worried about the outcome, because I hadn’t planned this recipe for a whole, uncut branzino fish. I wanted to cook the filet with the potatoes and tomatoes in the oven, but in order to get the filet, I would have to cook the fish as a whole. Cooking it a second time could cause the fish to go dry.

Thankfully, the branzino never went dry. This dish took my family and me back to the many times of ordering this beautiful white fish at the local Italian trattorie on a warm summer day. My father even claimed it to be the best Branzino recipe ever put together, and everyone who knows my father would tell you that he’s not afraid to say it straight, and criticize heavily.

Roasted Branzino with Rosemary Potatoes

  • 2 Branzino whole fishes
  • 4 Roman Tomatoes
  • 4 Russet Potatoes
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • 1/2 cup Italian Olives
  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Peel the potatoes. After peeling, slice the potatoes with a mandolin slicer, or as thin as you can with a knife. Give them a rinse in the sink.

Peel the potatoes.

Peel the potatoes.

Thinly slice the potatoes with a knife or mandolin slicer.

Thinly slice the potatoes with a knife or mandolin slicer.

Wash the potatoes.

Wash the potatoes.

Place the sliced potatoes in a pan with 1/4 cup of olive oil, and heat over the stove on medium-high.

Chop about 1/4 cup of rosemary and add it to the potatoes. Continue to heat for about 10 minutes, or until the potatoes are soft, but slightly crisped. Season with 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt, and a teaspoon of pepper.

Pan-fry the potatoes until they are slightly golden brown.

Pan-fry the potatoes until they are slightly golden brown.

Place the branzinos on a pan lined with foil, and drizzle olive oil over the fishes. Season the fishes with salt (about 2 teaspoons) and pepper. Place the olives alongside the fishes as well, and a bundle of rosemary and thyme in the middle of the two fishes. Bake for 8 minutes.

Cooked Branzino

As the branzinos cook in the oven, slice the tomatoes thin with a knife. Lay the tomatoes at the bottom of a large pan, and set aside.

Thinly slice the tomatoes.

Thinly slice the tomatoes.

Once the branzino is done, take it out and extract the good meat of the fish with a spoon and fork. Discard the head, tail, and skin. Lay the fish meat over the tomatoes. Lay the potatoes on top of the fish meat. Add the olives that were baked with the fish to the pan as well. Place it in the oven for another 5 minutes.

Lay the branzino over the tomatoes.

Lay the branzino over the tomatoes.

Branzino Dish

Serve warm with a drizzle of olive oil if desired. Buon appetito!

Branzino Dish

4 responses on “Roasted Branzino with Rosemary Potatoes

  1. Ben

    It was great seeing you in Reston at Grandma Barbara and Grandpa Joe’s.I recently looked at your seafood recipes and was tempted by the rosemary potatoes and branzino. When I encountered some branzino from Greece at my local market – Fairway – I took the plunge. Well worth the effort – modest as it turned out. An easy dish with great results. Did you ever try it with branzino fillets, instead of roasting the whole fish first? If so, I would appreciate some guidance on that shortcut.

    Keep the great recipes and adventures coming.

    Gorman

  2. Looks delicious, Ben! There are wonderful new creamer potatoes at the famers markets now – I know what I’m going to serve them with next!

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