Prep 20 mins
Cook 25 mins
When we lived in Italy DH LOVED the whole fish baked in a salt crust and served at the table where the crust was cracked, then fileted with a spoon and fork and the fish was so moist and flavorful. I never knew how to do it then saw Anne Burrell on TV prepare it and knew I had to get the recipe and make it for us. I haven't done this yet, but will very soon.
- 2 lemons, 1 zested and juiced and one sliced into thin rounds
- 1 bunch thyme, half picked and half left whole
- 4 bay leaves, fresh and coarsely snipped
- 3 garlic cloves, smashed
- 9 egg whites
- 8 cups kosher salt
- 2 fish, 1 pound whole, with fins and gills removed
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil, for finishing
- In food processor, combine lemon zest and juice, picked thyme, bay leaves and garlic and pulse until a coarse paste.
- Add egg whites and puree until frothy and foamy.
- In large bowl combine herb-egg white mixture with salt and mix until a moist paste.
- Place half of lemon slices and whole thyme in cavity of each fish.
- On a baking sheet, place a little less than half of salt mixture in two rows.
- Lay fish on top of each.
- Pack remaining salt mixture around fish to encase them, pressing mixture firmly on fish to create crust.
- Roast fish at 450 for 25 minutes. Remove and let rest for 10 minutes.
- Crack open salt crust and brush excess salt from fish.
- Remove top fillet, pull the spine out and remove the bottom fillet.
- Drizzle with olive oil and serve.