Salt baked sea bass with rosemary and thyme

Ingredients:

  • 4 free-range egg whites
  • 1.5kg coarse sea salt
  • 2 tbsp fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1kg sea bass, gutted and cleaned (but not scaled), fins removed
  • Small bunch fresh rosemary
  • Small bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, skin on, bashed

Method:

  1. Heat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Line a large baking sheet with baking paper it should be big enough to fit the fish on comfortably.
  3. To make the salt crust, whisk the egg white to soft peaks, then fold in the salt and fennel seeds.
  4. Spread one third of the salt mixture onto the lined baking tray and flatten to make a bed for the fish (it should be about 1cm thick), then lay the sea bass on top of it.
  5. Season the cavity, then stuff it with the herbs, lemon slices and garlic.
  6. Spoon the remaining salt mixture over the sea bass and use your hands to mould it around the fish in an even layer so that it is completely enclosed.
  7. Bake for 30 minutes.
  8. To serve, crack the crust, remove it from the fish and discard, then remove the skin and discard that too. Brush off any excess salt, then flake the flesh from the bone in large pieces
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