Parmesan Herb Baked Halibut with Herbed White Beans and Gremolata
December 30, 2021
This halibut recipe is cozy and comforting, but fancy enough to include in a dinner party menu. It is just as easy to prepare for a small group as a large crowd, which makes it appropriate for a weeknight dinner as well as a holiday feast.
If you don’t have halibut, Lingcod or Pacific Cod would work instead. Cannellini beans are perfect for this recipe due to their large size and ultra-soft and creamy interior, but other white beans such as navy beans or baby lima beans would also work. The recipe calls for two cans of beans, but if you prefer you can cook dry beans ahead of time. Use 1½ cups cooked beans in place of each can.
Baking Dish: A regular 9x13 inch baking dish is the perfect size for four halibut portions. If you don’t have one, a rimmed baking sheet could be used.
Sauté Pan: Use a pan that is at least 10 inches wide with sides that are about 3 inches high which will be large enough to hold the broth and the beans.
Food Processor: A food processor makes quick work of the gremolata sauce. If you don’t have one, pulse the ingredients together in a blender, or very finely chop the herbs and garlic and stir in with the olive oil and lemon juice.
What you Need
Halibut: Wild for Salmon halibut portions are perfect for this recipe. Thaw them in the fridge overnight and they are ready to go.
Panko breadcrumbs: Use Panko or regular Italian breadcrumbs, just make sure the ones you get are unseasoned or the dish will end up too salty.
Parmesan: Purchase pre-grated parmesan or grate it yourself.
Olive oil: Olive oil is featured in all of the components of this recipe. Use the good stuff if you can.
Parsley: Fresh parsley acts as the base of the gremolata sauce and adds a little color and brightness to the breadcrumb topping.
Garlic Powder: Using garlic powder in the breadcrumb topping instead of fresh reduces the risk of burning and ensures even distribution.
Shallot: Shallot builds a savory flavor base for the cannellini beans. Mince them finely and they will essentially disappear into the sauce.
Garlic: Fresh garlic packs a punch of flavor in the beans as well as the gremolata.
Rosemary & Thyme: Fresh rosemary and thyme are used, but feel free to sub in oregano or sage if you have them. If you don’t have fresh herbs on hand, use a tablespoon of dry Italian seasoning instead.
Crushed red pepper flakes: Pepper flakes add just a touch of heat, if you like spicy food you can add more.
Cannellini Beans: Use canned beans or dry ones you have cooked ahead of time.
Vegetable stock: Creates a base for the bean broth. Vegetable, seafood, or chicken stock can all be used.
Basil: Fresh basil adds an element of freshness to the gremolata, but you could leave it out and sub in additional parsley if you prefer.
Oregano: Adds another layer of herby flavor to the gremolata.
Lemon Juice: Lemon brightens up the gremolata. Use fresh if you can but the bottled kind will also work.
How to make the dish
Prepare and Bake the Halibut. Thaw it in the fridge overnight and pat dry. Season with salt and pepper and mix together the parmesan breadcrumb topping. Sprinkle it over the halibut and bake.
Prepare the beans. Sauté the shallot, garlic, herbs, and red pepper flakes in the olive oil and add the white beans and stock. Lightly mash the beans with a fork and simmer until slightly thickened.
Make the Gremolata and assemble. Combine the herbs, olive oil, garlic, and salt in the work bowl of a food processor and pulse until combined. Layer the halibut and gremolata on top of the beans and serve immediately.
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MarisaKerkvliet of Lemon Thyme Kitchen is a freelance recipe developer and food photographer with a Master’s degree in Nutrition. She was raised on her family’s farm in Northwest Washington and her appreciation for good food developed at a very early age. She is passionate about creating recipes and beautiful imagery that highlight high-quality seasonal ingredients. Marisa loves all types of seafood, but her favorites are salmon and scallops!
2 15-ounce cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup vegetable stock
1 teaspoon salt
FOR THE GREMOLATA
⅔ cup parsley leaves
⅔ cup basil leaves
½ cup olive oil
1 tablespoon oregano leaves
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Use a paper towel to pat the halibut dry and place in a parchment-lined baking dish. Season with salt and pepper on both sides.
In a small bowl combine the breadcrumbs, parmesan, olive oil, parsley, and garlic powder and stir to thoroughly combine.
Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture evenly over the halibut and set aside.
Prepare the beans by heating the olive oil over medium-low heat in a large sauté pan. Add the shallot, garlic, rosemary, thyme, and red pepper flakes and sauté for 3-5 minutes or until the shallots begin to turn translucent.
Add the beans, stock, and salt and bring to a gentle simmer. Use a fork to gently smash some of the beans. Continue to simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the beans are heated through and the broth begins to thicken.
While the beans are simmering, add the prepared halibut to the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes or until the halibut is cooked through.
While the halibut is baking, prepare the gremolata by combining the parsley, basil, olive oil, oregano, garlic, lemon juice, and salt to the work bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times until the herbs are finely chopped and everything is combined. Taste and adjust for seasoning. Add more lemon or salt if necessary.
Transfer the beans to a serving platter, nestle the baked halibut on top, and drizzle on the gremolata. Serve immediately.