Sea bass, hake or cod are not the only fish you should be eating. If you haven't yet included monkfish in your diet, what are you waiting for? It is a fish with very tender, soft flesh and an exceptional flavour. What's more, you can use the head to make a delicious broth.
How to cook monkfish baked in the oven?
Monkfish can be prepared in a wide variety of styles and recipes. For a day at the beach, fried monkfish or pixi style; for healthier meals – grilled monkfish, and if you are looking for a more elaborate dish that brings out all the flavours of the fish, then baked monkfish. It's a pretty healthy recipe too, as it is low in calories and will delight diners.
The best thing about monkfish is that it is a fish that is not bred in captivity, but must be taken wild from the sea. As it does not live in hatcheries, but on the seabed, a monkfish feeds on small fish and crustaceans; this makes its flavour and the quality of its meat unique.
- A whole monkfish. Remember that the tail of the monkfish is used for direct consumption; the size of the fish influences the portions for each diner.
- Four potatoes.
- One onion.
- Four cloves of garlic.
- Extra virgin olive oil.
- Coarse salt.
- Fresh or dried parsley.
- The first thing to do is to clean the monkfish. You can clean it yourself at home by separating the head from the body of the animal. Monkfish is a fish that is usually covered by a net, so don't hesitate to remove it so that the meat is cleaner and, of course, clean the entrails.
- Place the head of the monkfish and a few sprigs of parsley in a sufficiently large casserole dish. Add plenty of water, so that it covers the head.
- Bring to the boil over medium-high heat.
- Add a pinch of salt.
- It is ready when a broth forms. That is, the water will change colour and start to smell different - monkfish stock is delicious!
- While the stock is on the stove, peel the onion and potatoes. The potatoes should be cut into slices of about the same thickness, while the onion should be cut into julienne strips; you can also cut onion rings.
- Heat oil in a good-sized frying pan and fry the potatoes and onion for a few minutes. Both the potatoes and onion should start to brown.
- In an ovenproof dish, place the potatoes and onion.
- Pour a little stock over the potatoes and onion.
- Preheat the oven to 220ºC.
- Season the monkfish with salt and pepper and place it in the pan with the potatoes and onion. The skin should always be in contact with the potatoes.
- Drizzle the monkfish with a little oil.
- Leave in the oven for approximately 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, remove the pan and cover it with kitchen paper to keep it warm.
- Serve with the monkfish, potatoes and onion.
- Sprinkle a little vinegar over the top.
You can also prepare a stir-fry for the monkfish to enhance the flavour of the fish. To do this you will need to peel and slice a few cloves of garlic and brown them in a frying pan with a dash of oil; add chilli (optional) and sauté. Pour in some fish stock and sprinkle with finely chopped dried or fresh parsley. Stir the mixture so that all the ingredients bind together.
Then remove from the heat and pour over the monkfish - the flavour will be unbeatable!
Garnishes for oven baked monkfish
Oven baked monkfish can be prepared whole, i.e. put the whole tail in the pan or cut into slices. Approximately eight slices can be obtained from each monkfish and serve two per person.
Monkfish is the main dish in a good meal, but you can accompany it with starters or different side dishes in addition to the potatoes. You can even do without them. For example, monkfish can be accompanied with a salad of lettuce, tomato, onion and rocket. You can even prepare a seafood salad with lettuce, small peeled prawns, crab sticks, tuna, seaweed or gulas. It will be a unique combination of seafood! If you want to go further, then a seafood rice with clams and mussels is a good alternative.
Monkfish is also served with steamed vegetables such as carrots, broccoli and cauliflower. Potatoes can be baked or boiled. As a starter, you can serve any of the different cold soups that exist, such as vichyssoise, gazpacho or salmorejo. Of course, don't forget to accompany the baked monkfish with bread – your guests will thank you for it!