Working with a tabletop oven is definitely challenging! Unlike with regular convection stove top ovens where I know what to expect in terms of time, heat and so forth, tabletop ovens are a different thing altogether – the heat distribution is different, the duration and temperature varies and so forth. My only way around it is to start from scratch and use it for a variety of dishes ranging from meats to desserts and cookies just to be doubly sure about how a certain item is going to turn out the moment I put it into the oven. With this dish, I found myself standing in front of the oven too often for my liking, so much so that I had to juggle entertaining Eva AND baking! ARGH!
This dish is tangy but subtly tinged with that sharp gingery taste – just great for getting rid of that slight salty sea taste that most sea fishes have. I used snapper slices for this dish but you can replace it with just about anything you like, from tuna to salmon and other white-meat fishes like cod, and trout. Feel free to experiment by using different citrus fruits – orange, lime, grapefruit – and herbs – oregano, rosemary, dill – when and if you replace the fish with breeds like tuna and salmon. I didn’t add in any salt or pepper because the fish sauce is salty enough coupled with the natural salty taste of seafish and I wanted to retain that natural flavour without any hint of pepper – black or white. I would have liked it a little bit more brown on the top, but this is still quite yummy.
Most of all, I love the fact that this is a very healthy dish – minimal oil with lots of natural flavours. It’s definitely different from what I’ve been eating all this while WITHOUT the use of an oven. Do note that temperatures here will depend largely on the thickness of your fish. Mine were nearly 1 inch thick so I had to bake them for much longer! 🙂
Lemon-ginger baked fish
Two medium-large fillets/slices of white fish
Handful of chives
1 1/2 whole lemons
1 inch ginger
Salt & pepper to taste (optional)
- Thinly slice the lemon, julienne the ginger and finely chop up the chives.
- Wash and pat dry the fish slices and prepare the baking pan by lining it first with lemon slices before sprinkling over the ginger shreds.
- Place the fish slices over the ginger shreds and then sprinkle the chives before lining the tops with ginger shred and lemon slice. Extra lemon slices can be squeezed over the fish and tossed into the baking pan as well.
- Lightly dress the fish in some fish sauce and olive oil.
- Let it sit in the fridge for about 45 minutes before baking. When ready, preheat the oven to 210°C and bake the fish covered for about 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and increase the temperature to 240°C.
- Bake the fish again but this time uncovered for another 10-20 minutes (depending on how thick your fish slices are) or until the lemon tops have browned a little. Serve hot with a side serving of fresh salad or rice and don’t forget to use the sauce left behind from the baking process.