Thursday, July 30, 2009

Recipe :: Harissa Brushed Halibut with Gazpacho

Our first course at the Moroccan dinner was this beautiful Harissa brushed Halibut. Harissa is very powerful so use it sparingly. It’s a gorgeous contrast to the delicate white halibut. Harissa is a North African hot red sauce or paste made from chili peppers (often smoked or dried) and garlic, often with coriander and caraway or cumin and served with olive oil. It can be used both as a condiment and as an ingredient in recipes. Our favorite is this one.

The gazpacho will be one of the easiest things you’ll ever make. Double the recipe and have it on hand for lunch. So refreshing! Scroll down for the full recipe.

All Photos by Karen Mordechai

Harissa Brushed Halibut with Gazpacho
(Makes 4 servings)

For the Halibut
1 tbl harissa paste
juice of ½ a lemon
1 lb halibut, cut into 4
salt to taste

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Combine harissa powder and lemon juice. Brush a super thin layer on the fish and season with salt. Wrap tightly in foil and bake for 10 minutes.

For the Gazpacho
4 cups tomato juice
1 cucumber, peeled seeded and cubed
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
½ small red onion, chopped
1 small garlic clove, chopped
¼ c olive oil
¼ c balsamic vinegar
2 Tbl Worcestire Sauce
1/2 tsp cumin
juice nad zest of 1 lime
salt and pepper to taste

combine all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for 3 minutes
chill for at least an hour

garnish: microgreens from the farmers market tossed with a bit of olive oil

Copyright © 2009 by Casey Solomon


  1. This looks lovely and so delicious!

  2. Gorgeous pictures! Great job.

  3. The last picture is absolutely amazing! Lovely recipe!
    Both my parents were born and raised in Morocco and my grandmothers used to make the traditional couscous all the time, with chicken, mutton, zucchini, chickpeas, hot sausage and couscous grain and serve it alongsidebowls of Harissa. Except my grandma would always come by first and pour all the sauce dishes back in the big "coucoussier" to make sure it would be spicy enough. Harissa and my own couscous pot were the first items I brought from France when I moved to the US!

  4. Delicious! The Harissa looks so fabulous in those dishes... incredible photos!

  5. Beautiful pictures! Do you have any other fish suggestions in case I can't find halibut? I haven't looked, but I want to be prepared!

  6. Hi Kate,
    Salmon or any flaky white fish would be yummy! Let us know how it goes!

  7. Is something missing from the recipes? The gazpacho doesn't list tomatoes, the greens on top of the fish in the photo are missing, and the recipe states that all of the gazpacho ingredients are chopped, but in the photo it seems pureed. Is that right?

    The photos look wonderful, so I'd love to try this recipe, but I'd like to be able to get similar results.

  8. Hi everybody - thanks for all the great feedback !
    tartlette- that is such a nice story - did you grandmother make the couscous by hand? this is karen writing, I had family from morrocco growing up as well, they'd make the couscous by hand, a labor intensive endeavor and serve it with a warm vegetable stew, so hearty and comforting. thanks for writing in and sharing.

    Abby - looks like our blog entry got cut off early- we just fixed it...enjoy! and let us know how it goes ! thanks for pointing this out.

  9. What is about microgreens that just give every plate a delicate delight???
    I love always discovering an old fav I haven't done in a while in a fresh way...harissa!!!

  10. Hi Karen,
    Yes, she used to at first and when she got older she would go to the ethnic market and purchase it right from the source. It is one of the things she did not have the chance to pass on to any of us unfortunately. I still steam mine the long fashioned way!

  11. that looks so good. my husband went on a fishing trip and brought me back a bunch of halibut and I am always needing a recipe for fish.

  12. The colors look adorable. I'd grab a bite.