Sam is a trusted home cook.
How about a whole fish baked in a salt dome?
I always like Giadas salmon in puff pastry. Makes a great presentation and very good!
Margie is a trusted home cook immersed in German foodways.
You could do parchment packets of fish. Lay a piece of fish on parchment paper, season with salt, pepper, fresh herbs ( I like tarragon), slices of onion and lemon, chopped garlic and a few drops of pastis. Add some butter or olive oil. Wrap it up, place in a baking dish, and bake at about 350 until done. Tastes great, simple to make, and clean-up is minimal.
A whole salmon, stuffed or not would be delicious. Season it, wrap it in foil & bake at 400F for 10 min per inch of thickness.
pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.
In Rome eel is one of the traditional seven fishes for "la vigilia"---yes, really. And it can be quite good.
June is a trusted source on General Cooking.
How many people are you serving? I've done branzino several times lately. The whole fish makes a beautiful presentation, and you can cook as many as you need, easily. I figure 3 people to a fish, as the fillets are quite large.
Hi-my Mother used to roast baccala with slices of lemon,or stew baccala with potatoes and raisins in tomato sauce every Christmas Eve. Its a family tradition that I still carry on every December 24 for La Vigilia.
Trust the Italians to figure out a way to elevate a meal that is supposed to be a bit of a fast to high art. Are there any other meals that are supposed to be simple, sparse affairs and associated with religious observances that have become such feasts?
I'm not sure how much work you want to put into it. If you'd rather do less, I recommend Jacques Pepin's slow roasted salmon. He covers it with EVOO and herbs and bakes it at 200 degrees for 40 minutes. But what would look very nice for Christmas is skipping the herbs and topping the cooked salmon with his ravigote sauce (tomatoes, capers, parsley, etc.). The beauty of this dish is that the cooking time doesn't have to be exact, the salmon is incredibly moist and you can cook it on the platter you are going to serve it on. So easy, but looks and tastes great.
I vote for the salmon (being on the pacific side of the world). And yes, get the whole fish - head and eyes intact.I like what I call the "yacht club" version Thant I had once at the Royal Yacht Club.Stuff with a tapenade of sun-dried tomato, chopped black olive, fine chopped red onion or shallot, a bit of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. A bit of parsley for color. Stuff into the salmon and bake until done.Serve warm or chilled - but not cold.Garnish with lemon or sprinkle with lemon zest and chopped parsley.This dish let's you prepare it in the afternoon and enjoy visiting with your guests before service.
Bigpan my man, you left out the capers from the tapenade. They are essential otherwise it's not tapenade, it's an olive spread. Plus, capers go really well with cold salmon.
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