White Fish in Piquant Tomato Sauce

If you watch chefs on the Food Network, on shows such as Jamie Oliver’s “Jamie at Home,” Gordon Ramsay’s “Kitchen Nightmares,” and “Restaurant Makeover,” you realize that many good dishes are simple, quick and easy to create. Fresh ingredients and basic techniques are the hallmarks of the best chefs.

This week’s featured recipe is from Gordon Ramsay’s, Cooking for Friends. With basic ingredients that are in most people’s cupboards, you can make a delicious tomato sauce in which to poach fillets of white fish.

Now, let’s get cooking!

White Fish in Piquant Tomato Sauce

Ramsay’s recipe calls for a fish called whiting, which is unavailable locally, so I used tilapia. I think you could also use cod or halibut.


1 to 11/4 pound white fish fillets

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 large onion, chopped finely

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

splash of dry white wine

100 ml (about 1/2 cup) fish stock, chicken stock or water (I used instant chicken broth) 400g diced tomatoes (that’s 1/2 of a 28 ounce can)

pinch of dried chili flakes

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp dried basil


Heat the oil in a pan for which you have a tight fitting lid, over low-medium heat. Cook the onion with a pinch of salt and pepper until it begins to soften. Add the chopped garlic and cook another two minutes. Add the splash of white wine and let simmer until the pan is quite dry. Stir in the stock, tomatoes, chili, oregano and basil. Let simmer for about 30 minutes until the tomatoes have broken down and the sauce has thickened. Taste and adjust the seasoning. If you want your sauce a little more piquant, add a few dashes of Tabasco sauce. (Note: Ramsay’s recipe called for two anchovy fillets, chopped and added to the mix at the same time as the garlic. I didn’t have any anchovies when I made the sauce, so I left them out; the sauce turned out fine. You might like to add them if you try this sauce.)

When sauce is cooked, season fillets with salt and pepper, and lower into the sauce. Cover with tight-fitting lid, and steam fish over medium heat, three to four minutes, until firm and opaque.

When fish is cooked, lift out of the pan with large spatula; serve topped with a generous portion of sauce. Accompany with rice and a garden salad. Serves four.

Now, let’s get cooking! And, don’t forget to do something special for your sweetheart on February 14. Happy Valentine’s Day!


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