Pan Seared Halibut with Fresh Tomato Sauce

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Pan Seared Halibut with Fresh Tomatoes


The making of Pan Seared Halibut with Fresh Tomato Sauce

This recipe for Pan Seared Halibut with Fresh Tomato Sauce is so easy, it hardly needs a recipe.

But I’m writing one anyway, just so you will have an opportunity to try it and like it.  And to help me remember it so I will make it again.



If you follow me on Twitter, Facebook or Google +, then you know I just received a load of fish that I purchased when I was in Seattle at Pure Food Fish located in the Pike’s Place Market.  Even going to our best stores, and paying top dollar, I can’t get better, fresher fish then buying direct from Pure Food Fish.

Sure, it’s an investment up-front, buying a whole fish, but overall, it’s a bargain. And Pure Food Fish Market gives free shipping, so the cost of the fish is all you have to pay for.

Free shipping is a big plus.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve ordered food from the internet and find that the shipping cost is two to three times more than the product cost.

The fish is cut into one-pound portions and sealed in bags that are meant to allow you to freeze, without compromising the fish, for up to a year.  The most important thing is how you thaw the fish.  Thawing it in the refrigerator overnight lets it thaw slowly.  That keeps the fish at its best.

Anyway, so I have all these green beans from my garden, so I planned to make Roasted Green Beans with Prosciutto.

Also growing is tomatoes and basil, so why not combine them to make a sauce for my beautiful halibut?

Why not indeed.

A simple sear in a hot pan with a bit of extra virgin olive oil, I cook the halibut until it’s just beginning to give when a knife is inserted into the flesh.  You don’t want to overcook it!  Keep it nice and moist and tender.  I remove the fish from the pan and set it aside, the add a bit of prosciutto that I had out for the green beans and let that fry for a couple of minutes,  then I added about a cup of cherry tomatoes I cut into halves, no need to peel or seed; once they start to break down, I add a splash of white wine.

A splash.

That’s one of those technical cooking terms.  Like a pinch, or a dash.  A splash to me is when you take the wine bottle, hold in over the pan, start pouring, count  1 – 2, and then stop pouring.  That’s a splash of wine. Let that cook for a couple of minutes to allow the alcohol to cook off, then I added a handful of torn basil along with about one tablespoon of cold butter.  Stir that in, add the fish back for a minute to warm back up, plate it onto a warm plate and pour the sauce over.

See, simple.

Pan Seared Halibut with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Pan Seared Halibut with Fresh Tomato Sauce


Pan Seared Halibut with Fresh Tomato Sauce


  • 2 (about 5 ounce each) pieces of halibut filet, skin removed if present (or you could use cod, grouper or another white fish, cooking times may vary)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ounce (I used 2 slices from the package) prosciutto, thinly sliced (also called a chiffonade)
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes, or other type of tomato diced (if you are making this in winter, use diced canned tomatoes)
  • A splash of white wine (about 1/4 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, torn
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


Step 1

Pat the fish dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.

Heat a sauté pan over medium heat, add the oil; when hot add the fish. Cook until just cooked through, turning once (my halibut was about 1 inch thick, I cooked it for about 3 minutes per side). After you turn the fish, while it cooks on the other side; add the prosciutto to the pan. Stir it around a bit, once the fish is ready, remove it to a plate and add the cut tomatoes to the pan. Cook, stirring until the tomatoes start to break down. Add a pinch of salt and a dash of pepper; then stir in the basil along with the cold butter. Stir until the butter has melted, add the fish back into the pan to warm slightly, then plate on a warm plate, spooning the sauce over the fish.

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Nutritional Info

This information is per serving.
  • Calories
  • Fat
    17g (5g Sat, 8g Mono, 2g Poly)
  • Protein
  • Carbohydrate
  • Dietary Fiber
  • Cholesterol
  • Sodium
  • Nutritional information is provided as a guideline and may not be 100% accurate

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