Serves 4 -6 depending on size of sea bass
- A whole sea bass, scaled, cleaned and gutted with tail and fins removed
- 3kg (7lbs) sea salt
- vegetable oil
- 4 shallots, peeled and sliced thinly
- 1 fennel bulb, chopped
- 8 button mushrooms, sliced thinly
- 1 tbsp parsley, roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp tarragon, roughly chopped
- 125ml (4½ fl oz) fish stock
- 30ml (2fl oz) white wine
- 100g (3½oz) unsalted butter, diced
- green beans
- new potatoes
- Preheat the oven to 230°C / 450°F / Gas Mark 8
- Heat a little vegetable oil in a pan and fry the shallots, fennel and mushrooms for 5 minutes until softened and slightly brown.
- Allow to cool, then add the parsley and tarragon.
- Fill the empty stomach cavity with the stuffing.
- Take a large baking dish and cover the base with 3cm of sea salt. Place the fish on the bed of salt. Then cover with another 3-4cm of salt, making sure the fish is completely covered.
- Place the dish in the oven and cook for 35 minutes.
- Put the fish stock and white wine in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add the butter and whisk until smooth.
- Remove the dish from the oven and place on a heat-proof board.
- Scrape away any loose salt and dig out the shape of the fish without exposing it.
- Gently remove the fish without cracking the hardened salt and place on a serving dish.
- Serve with boiled green beans, new potatoes and the butter sauce.