Monday, 9 November 2015

Baked Cod Provencal

A delicious, healthy taste of the Meditteranean, cooked in just the one tray!

Yes, that's right. Not only does this taste amazing, you only need one tray to cook it in, so less pots to contend with, too!

Succulent fillets of cod cook perfectly in the oven, on top of a bed of delicious roasted vegetables full of Provencal flavours. Shavings of lemony fennel inspired by Gordon Ramsey, top it all off perfectly for a contrasting texture, with fresh herbs.

Serves two, 318 calories per serving.

[Calories in square brackets, weights after preparation, tbsp are 15ml]

  • 2 x 140g boneless, skin-on cod fillets (you could use skinless, but the skin helps keep it moist, and in one piece. Add 25 calories per portion for skinless. Skin not intended to be consumed in this recipe) [224 calories]
  • 1 medium courgette (230g) [41]
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cored (180g) [56]
  • 1 fennel bulb (170g) [29]
  • 2 tsp olive oil (feel free to use a splash more if not counting calories) [82]
  • 1 tsp lemon juice [1]
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely sliced [12]
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds, roughly crushed [7]
  • 1 tsp dried oregano [5]
  • 1.5 tbsp small capers, drained [5]
  • 12 of your favourite olives, pitted (35g, kalamata are good) [45]
  • 6 anchovy fillets in oil, drained and finely chopped (optional, but they just melt into everything and give a lovely flavour) [39]
  • 3 ripe plum tomatoes (or large vine tomatoes), halved (300g) [60]
  • 1.5 tbsp balsamic vinegar [26]
  • Several fresh basil leaves and/or some flat leaf parsley, chopped (at the last minute) [2]
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper [1]
Serving suggestions
  • Extra virgin olive oil to drizzle over at the end (a couple of tbsp each if not counting calories!) 
  • New potatoes - boil for 20 minutes when first roasting the courgette slices and peppers, then add to the tray with the tomatoes etc. (approximately 70 calories per 100g)
  • Crusty bread to mop up any juices
1. Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 7 / 220C / 200C fan oven. Season the flesh of the cod with salt and set aside. Cut the peppers into diamonds, and the courgette into 1cm slices on the diagonal. Toss in 1 tsp of the olive oil and roast in a tray (I like to line mine with greaseproof baking paper first to avoid burning around the edges) in a single layer in the oven for about 15 minutes, until a few corners of the peppers are just starting to brown.

2. Cut the root off the bottom of the fennel, then finely slice (a mandolin is the easiest to do this, especially the first few really thin slices) and reserve a small handful of really thin slices to garnish, tossing thoroughly in the lemon juice. Add the thicker sliced fennel, the sliced garlic, fennel seeds, oregano, capers, olives, chopped anchovies, halved tomatoes and balsamic vinegar to the tray with the partially cooked courgette slices and peppers, season with a little salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper, toss together thoroughly, make sure the tomatoes are cut side up, and then roast for a further 10 minutes.

3. Turn the oven down to gas mark 5, place the cod (skin side down) on top of the vegetables, brush with the remaining oil, season with freshly ground black pepper, and bake for a further 6-10 minutes depending on the thickness of your cod, or until just about cooked through (in my oven, 7 minutes is spot on - remember it continues cooking for a couple of minutes once you take it out of the oven).

4. Serve the cod on top of the vegetables, drizzled with the pan juices and topped with the reserved fennel and fresh herbs. Enjoy!

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