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Pan-Seared Fennel-Scented Halibut with Puttanesca

Pan-Seared Fennel-Scented Halibut with Puttanesca

Tomato-based sauces, such as this, are a zesty match for halibut.

Cooking Light APRIL 2008

  • Yield: 4 servings


  • Orzo:
  • 6 ounces orzo
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Fish:
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 (6-ounce) halibut fillets
  • 4 teaspoons extravirgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 tablespoon drained capers
  • 1/4 cup sliced fresh basil


1. To prepare orzo, cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Place pasta in a bowl; stir in rind and next 4 ingredients (through 1/8 teaspoon black pepper). Toss to combine.

2. To prepare fish, combine fennel seeds, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper; stir well. Sprinkle both sides of the fish with fennel seed mixture. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add fish to pan; sauté 5 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Transfer to a plate, and keep warm.

3. Heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and red pepper flakes to pan; sauté 1 minute. Add garlic; sauté 15 seconds. Stir in tomatoes and capers; cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in basil and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Divide pasta evenly among each of 4 plates; top each with 1 fillet. Spoon 1/3 cup tomato mixture over each serving.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 435
  • Calories from fat: 24%
  • Fat: 11.6g
  • Saturated fat: 2.6g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 5.8g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 2.2g
  • Protein: 42.1g
  • Carbohydrate: 38.7g
  • Fiber: 3.5g
  • Cholesterol: 59mg
  • Iron: 2mg
  • Sodium: 604mg
  • Calcium: 115mg

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Pan-Seared Fennel-Scented Halibut with Puttanesca Recipe