Cedar Plank Branzino
Soak the cedar plank it doesn't burn in the oven while providing a great transfer of smoky flavor.
You can use sea bream or any light, flaky fish filet that is not more than half 1/2-inch thick.
1 onion, finely diced
1/2 cup garlic, chopped
2 heaping tablespoons capers, roughly chopped
One 12-ounce can tomatoes
1 heaping tablespoon tomato paste
2 sprigs fresh oregano
1 large teaspoon toasted and ground fennel seed
2 branzino, butterflied
2 cedar planks, soaked in water for 1 hour
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil, for drizzling
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup diced leeks (white and light green parts only), rinsed very well
1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes, plus more to taste
1 cup thinly sliced asparagus (about 1/2 pound)
1 cup fresh peas, blanched if very large
1 lemon, four very thin slices taken from it, and those slices cut into quarters
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the glaze:
In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients and stir well to combine.
For the branzino:
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Place fish, skin side-down, on each cedar plank and brush liberally with the glaze, if using. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle lightly with olive oil.
Place in the oven and bake for 8-12 minutes.
For the vegetables:
Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
Add the leeks and the pepper flakes and season with a little salt.
Cook, stirring, until the leeks are tender and a bit browned, 8-10 minutes.
Add the asparagus and peas, and cook, tossing the mixture together, until the asparagus is crisp-tender, 3-4 minutes.
Add the sliced lemon and cook, stirring occasionally, until the lemon has wilted, about 2 minutes.
Add the tarragon, stir to combine well, and remove the vegetables from heat.
Squeeze a little lemon juice from the remaining lemon over all.
Taste and season with addition salt, if needed, and a little and black pepper.
Spoon the vegetables over the fish and serve on the cedar planks.