Earlier this month, I wrote a post on how to cook a whole fish in an avalanche of salt in the oven. Today, instead, I will show you how to steam a whole fish on the stove top. Today it’s a sea bream … but you can steam any kind of fish like this. It’s a very easy technique and steaming is an excellent way of cooking fish.
Here are some bits for putting into the fish’s cavity: some parsley, garlic, rosemary and tarragon. You can use whatever herbs you happen to have. These are to infuse some aroma into the flesh, not to eat. You will also need some parchment paper and some aluminium foil.
And wrap it up a third time, again in aluminium foil. The reason we wrapped it in parchment paper the first time is that there have been so many stories going round warning us against the dangers of aluminium in our food that it would be silly not to take some precaution. The parchment paper acts as a barrier to the aluminium foil.
Now that the fish is snug-as-a-bug in its three-layered shroud, we can proceed with steaming it.
SERVING THE ORATA
I decided I would serve the orata with some boiled potatoes and asparagus spears.
This is a very healthy dish as well as being quietly delicious — perfect for ladies who diet (and gentlemen too, of course!). Please note that although it is served at room temperature, it should not be assembled until just before serving.
This is another example of how to make the most of expensive, fresh fish in terms of quantity. Served like this, as a salad, the one fish will be plenty for four people.