Have you tried tarator sauce? This thick garlicy Middle Eastern sauce with sesame seeds is great served with fish such as sea bass.
I first made this recipe 10 years ago after being inspired on a holiday to Egypt. One of the best things about any holiday for me is trying local foods and then recreating recipes once I get home. I usually spend the flight home planning what dish to create first. It's one way to prolong the holiday vibe as well as being a way to get a tasty dinner!
A quick and easy fish supper
I love making easy recipes too and this sea bass with tarator sauce is definitely that. The sea bass is very quick to prepare and then you bake it in the oven for 20 minutes. While it is baking you can prepare the tarator sauce which is just a matter of whizzing things up in the food processor. What could be easier?
What is tarator sauce?
Tarator sauce is traditional in lots of North African and Middle Eastern countries. It's a thick white sauce that contains bread, sesame seeds, garlic, olive oil and lemon juice.
What does the tarator sauce taste like?
Its a little bit like a very garlicy lemony hummus but without the chickpeas. The bread thickens the sauce but you can't really tell that it's got bread in as it's just a base for the other flavours. It really is a delicious sauce.
Can you replace the sesame seeds with tahini?
Yes, by all means replace them with tahini. For this recipe I would use two tablespoons of tahini.
What ingredients do you need for this recipe?
- Sea bass - You can use whole fish or fillets or another white fish.
- White bread - I normally remove the crusts
- Garlic cloves
- Olive oil - Extra virgin is best
- Sesame seeds or tahini
How do you make sea bass with tarator sauce?
This recipe is really easy to make. Lemon and tomato are sliced thinly and put under and on top of sea bass which is then baked in the oven.
The sauce is made in the food processor so it's just a matter of putting everything in and blitzing it. Like all sauces it's best to taste it and adjust any ingredients to suit your tastes after blending it once. Some people might like more garlic, more lemon or more sesame seeds.
How can you adapt this recipe?
As you can see I've used filleted sea bass. You can use whole sea bass if you like. You can also use a different fish altogether. It would be great on other Mediterranean fish such as hake, hallibut or sea bream.
You can also adapt the tarator sauce. Just like with hummus, there are different ways you can flavour it. Why not add a little cayenne pepper?Or some fresh herbs? Parsley goes really well in it.
Can you eat the leftovers later?
The tarator sauce should keep for up to three days in the fridge. It may thicken up a little though so you might need to add another dash of olive oil before serving.
The fish is best eaten when it is freshly cooked but you can keep it in the fridge for 2-3 days if necessary and then serve it cold.
What can you do with leftover tarator sauce?
If you have too much tarator sauce it is great used in the same way as other dips. Spread it on toast, dip vegetable sticks or pitta bread into it or put it in a sandwich.
More fish recipes you might like
Why not try my sea bass with tahini sauce and saffron rice? Or check out these Middle Eastern sauces.
Sea Bass with Tarator Sauce
- 300 g sea bass one whole sea bass or two smaller fillets
- 2 lemons
- 1-2 tomatoes sliced
- 1 slice white bread
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 50 g sesame seeds
- Oil the bottom of a baking dish. Thinly slice one of the lemons. Put a layer of lemon slices on the bottom of the baking dish.
- Put the fish on top of the lemon. Cover the fish with slices of lemon and tomato. Season and drizzle with olive oil. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
- To make the sauce, tear up the bread and put it in a blender with the garlic and sesame seeds. Add a little water, the juice of the other lemon and a tablespoon of oil. Blend until you have a smooth thick sauce. Add more oil or seasoning if necessary.
- Serve with the fish.
I'm sorry to hear you've been sick but I'm so glad that you had fun in Egypt! I love the sound of this dish. So many great flavors.
I've been to Egypt and I had a wonderful time. The pyramids are so breathtaking. I like the flavors you used in this dish.
Year on the Grill
That would be a dream trip for me. And love this fish. I've done it on a grill, stuffed the lemons, onions inside the cavity. Need to try this method
It would definitely be delicious done on the grill.