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With its clean flavor and forgiving, crispable skin, black bass is…no trouble. (Sorry.) Dress it up with a versatile spicy relish.
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 4 5–6-ounce skin-on black bass fillets
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
- 1 serrano chile, thinly sliced
- 2 cups cilantro leaves with tender stems
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high until very hot but not smoking. Season bass with salt and pepper and cook, skin side down, gently pressing occasionally with a spatula to ensure contact with skillet, until skin is browned and crisp and flesh is nearly opaque, 6–8 minutes. Turn and cook until flesh is opaque throughout, about 1 minute longer.
Meanwhile, toss scallions, chile, cilantro, lime juice, sesame seeds, and remaining 2 Tbsp. oil in a medium bowl; season with salt. Serve bass with scallion-chile relish.