Basil-Steamed Halibut with Lemon Crème Sauce

Basil-Steamed Halibut with Lemon-Crème SauceRecipe
Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Mindi Shapiro Levine
A simple, quick fish stock is used for steaming the fish and for the sauce. Ask your fishmonger for white fish bones; the flavor from darker-fleshed fish might be too strong. It's important to thoroughly rinse fish bones and remove any blood before preparing the stock.


4 servings (serving size: 1 fillet and 2 tablespoons sauce)

Recipe from

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Nutritional Information

Calories 290
Fat 14.4 g
Satfat 6.9 g
Monofat 4.2 g
Polyfat 1.8 g
Protein 36.6 g
Carbohydrate 0.5 g
Fiber 0.1 g
Cholesterol 131 mg
Iron 1.6 mg
Sodium 387 mg
Calcium 88 mg


1 1/2 pounds white fish bones
2 medium carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 medium onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
4 cups water
1/4 cup crème fraîche
2 1/4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch fresh basil leaves (about 1 ounce)
4 (6-ounce) halibut fillets, skinned
Torn fresh basil leaves (optional)


1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a large Dutch oven; add 4 cups water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes. Strain mixture through a sieve into a bowl, reserving stock. Discard solids.

2. Pour 1/4 cup stock into a small saucepan (set remaining stock aside); bring to a boil over high heat. Boil 2 minutes or until stock is reduced to 2 tablespoons. Reduce heat to low. Combine crème fraîche, juice, and egg yolk in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Slowly pour egg mixture into reduced stock, stirring constantly with a whisk. Remove from heat; stir in butter, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Set aside.

3. Pour remaining stock into a large skillet; bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.

4. Line a vegetable steamer with 1 bunch basil leaves; arrange fillets in a single layer over basil. Place steamer in skillet; cover and steam fillets 15 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Carefully remove steamer from skillet. Sprinkle fillets with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt; let stand 5 minutes. Serve with sauce. Garnish with basil leaves, if desired.


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