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Crispy Skin Snapper, Blood orange, Fennel & Green Olives

Posted by GLOBAL on 10th Aug 2021

Crispy Skin Snapper, Blood orange, Fennel & Green Olives

There is something special about the combination of fish, fennel & blood orange. It's such a simple dish with everything works so well together with a little kick from green olives. Easy enough for any night of the week and just as perfect for a special occasion or long weekend lunch. Blood oranges have a short season but you can use a naval orange once the season ends.

Recipe by Tom Walton


  • 2 x 150g snapper fillets, skin on or use bream as an alternative
  • Flake sea salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 head fennel
  • 3 blood oranges
  • ½ cup each picked dill & mint
  • ½ cup green olives, pitted, halved
  • 2 tbsp chardonnay vinegar
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


Gently dry the skin of the snapper well with paper towel – this is important to getting a crispy skin. Carefully pin bone using fish tweezers and set the fish a side on a plate, skin side up. If doing this a few hours in advance keep the fish uncovered, skin side up in the fridge, which will help further dry the skin out.

Cut the fennel in half, and shave finely, 1mm thick with a sharp knife. Top and tail the blood orange and using a small paring knife cut around the orange to remove the skin, cutting with the curve of the fruit. Slice the peeled blood orange into 5mm thick rounds.

Roughly chop half the herbs and add to the fennel with remaining herbs and green olives. Don’t dress the salad yet.

Preheat a frypan over a high heat.

Season the fish with flake salt on both sides. Add the 2 tbsp of olive oil to the hot pan then carefully add the fish skin side down and keeping over the heat, press down on the fillets with a fish spatula for 15-20 seconds.

Manage the heat, turning down to a medium/high if needed so the fish is caramelising evenly, and you will start to see the sides of the fish browning and the flesh becoming opaque (you can cover with a lid at this point which helps speed up the cooking).

Cook the fish on the skin side most of the way, approx. 3 minutes for this size snapper, as they are a thinner fillet, then carefully flip the fish, remove the pan from the heat then after 20 seconds, remove the fish from the pan to a plate.

Dress the fennel salad with the vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, season with salt and pepper then gently toss.

To serve, layer the fennel salad and blood orange onto serving plates and top with the cooked snapper