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Spiced Roasted Halibut with Fennel and Onion

Alaskan halibut is sustainable and delicious. Here, a quick homemade spice blend seasons both the fish and the vegetables. Offer couscous, or basmati or jasmine rice, on the side. Chopped fresh cilantro makes a refreshing garnish.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 1 large fennel bulb, cut lengthwise into 1-inch (2.5-cm) wedges
  • 1 large red onion, halved lengthwise, then cut lengthwise
      through the root end into 1/2-inch (12-mm) wedges
  • 3 Tbs. olive oil, plus more as needed
  • Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 halibut fillets, each about 6 oz. (185 g)
  • Chopped fresh cilantro for garnish

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 450°F (230°C).

In a small bowl, stir together the cumin, chili powder, cinnamon and turmeric. In a 10-by-14-inch (25-by-35-cm) metal baking pan, combine the fennel and onion wedges. Add 2 Tbs. of the olive oil to the vegetables and toss to coat. Sprinkle with 1 Tbs. of the spice mixture and toss. Season with salt and pepper. Spread the vegetables in a single layer and roast, turning once, until tender and browned, about 35 minutes.

Meanwhile, brush a small baking pan with olive oil. Brush the fish fillets on both sides with the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil. Sprinkle lightly on both sides with the remaining spice mixture, salt and pepper. Roast until the fish is almost firm to the touch, 5 to 8 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillets.

Transfer the fish and vegetables to warmed plates, garnish with cilantro and serve immediately. Serves 2.

Quick tips: Halibut dries out easily, so be careful to not overcook the fish; it is better to err on the rare side. Mix up an extra portion of the spice blend to use on roasted or grilled shrimp, chicken or salmon.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Weeknight Fresh & Fast, by Kristine Kidd (Williams-Sonoma, 2011).