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Roasted Whole Fish over Vegetables

I used branzino, a common Mediterranean fish with dense white flesh, but again, a small bass or any medium round fish will do. You can add other vegetables that go well together, such as tomatoes or zucchini, to the roast-vegetable mix. They'll add their aroma to the cooked fish without affecting the cooking time or technique.

Makes 2 to 4 servings, depending on the size of the fish

1 whole fish (1 to 2 pounds), scaled, gilled and gutted

1 fennel bulb, sliced cross-wise into 1/4-inch-thick slices

1 onion, sliced cross-wise into 1/4-inch-thick slices

Olive oil (enough to lightly film both fish and vegetables)

Salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Toss the vegetables in olive oil and salt and pepper and place in a baking dish large enough to accommodate both fish and vegetables.

Roast the vegetables for 25 to30 minutes until softened and just starting to brown. Meanwhile, rub the outside of the fish on both sides with oil and season with salt and pepper. Stir the vegetables to redistribute and place the fish on top. Roast the fish and vegetables together 20 to 25 minutes until fish is just shy of being cooked through.

Serve immediately.

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