Cold spring day & roasted fish

Morrocan style dinner

Ottolenghi cooking or Moroccan-Iraeli style food – is there anything more comforting?!

The sea bass is a perfect fish with its firm flesh, and large enough to be a cool centerpiece for having friends over, or a weekend family dinner. Ottolenghi reserves it for a centerpiece in a  holiday feast – I don’t see why not.

What doctor ordered:

Cauliflower rice tabbouleh
Lebanese za’tar naan
Chermoula marinated sea bass stuffed with olives preserved lemon
Moroccan carrot salad
Grilled Eggplant and Lemons with Garlic Labneh


Carrot and Walnut Cake
Moroccan orange salad 

I made preserved lemons a few weeks before, knowing that I will be repeating this dish very soon.


Few notes for myself:

  • no matter how much water I put in into Hummus, its never enough, it comes out on a dry side – put even more water next time, tablespoon at a time, I have a feeling another 1/4 cup or more water would be just right.
  • need to purchase pesto mortar – Muhamara is best when mashed by hand, also, to be generous on pomegranate molasses.
  • for quick Lebanese pita breadstore bought naan grilled and smeared with mixture of 1/4 cup of olive oil and 1 tbsp of za’atar.
  • Bass needs to be marinated an hour or more before cooking, so it could be assembled and refrigerated before quests arrive.
  • Soften Carrots before grilling by microwaving them for at least 3 mins with 1/4 cup of water
  • For Eggplants be generous on labneh sauce.
  • Carrot cakeuse 9″ pan and take out sooner rather than later when it starts to be fragrant.



Some wine pairing notes:

Terra doro– crisp aromatic and versatile, perfect for summer sipping, paired well with herby zing of cauliflower rice tabbouleh.

This easy going wine is a natural accompaniment to all kinds of vegetable, its citrusy twist  was especially good with tangy Labneh & garlic spread and grilled eggplant & lemons.

Campo Viejo, Rioja Garnachabright, soft, creamy, balanced, light and drinkable, great with variety of tappas. Notes of toasty spice go well with cumin spiced hummus.  Strawberry and cherry aroma picked up a hint of pomegranate molasses in red pepper-muhamara.

Il Gelsowine from region of Lazio, bordering Tyrrenian Sea.

Beautiful rich fish such as roasted striped bass is excellent choice for this harmonious and woodsy wine which works well with roasted tomato&potato tian that accompanies the fish. Crisp acidity, splendid aroma, and high-pitched fruity notes play well with preserved lemon and olives that fish is stuffed with.




Carrot& walnut cake spiced with cinnamon and cloves which somewhat mimics Moroccan carrot salad on this Subterranean menu. Balance the sweetness by serving it with refreshing orange salad spiced with cinnamon and orange-blossom water.


or anything from this album/artist




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