Whole roast Japuta - (Palometa Negra) Ray's Bream
1 whole Japuta (scaled if you can)
Peel of half a preserved lemon (or thinly pared peel of a fresh lemon)
1 fresh lemon
1 teaspoon dried tarragon or a sprig of fresh
1 clove of garlic
The fishmonger and I tried to scale it as best we could but if roasting the skin forms its own "tin foil" covering.
Make deep diagonal slashes on either side of the fish. Season the fish inside and out with salt and pepper and rub skin with tarragon forcing some into each slit. Put the remaining tarragon in the belly of the fish and insert a thin sliver of lemon peel into each slit (if you have preserved lemons, use the peel of these but reduce the amount of salt seasoning). Put the remaining lemon peel in the belly of the fish with a clove of garlic
Preheat the oven to 200C (180C fan oven). Lightly oil a roasting dish with olive oil and lay the fish in. Drizzle with olive oil and the juice of half a lemon. Cover with foil and roast for 15 minutes.
Remove the foil (add a little more oil and/or lemon juice if the fish is drying out) and baste with the juices in the dish. Return to oven and continue cooking uncovered for 10-15 minutes until the skin is crispy and the flesh firm and white.
Remove from oven. Remove the top layer of skin.
- Carefully lift the fish onto a serving plate and pour over the juices from the tin and any remaining lemon juice.
- To serve, cut down the middle of the fish from head to tail to the backbone, then release the fillets from the bones on either side of the backbone. Slide a fish slice under the fillets and lift off, then pull the bone from the bottom fillets; divide and serve.
Santa Pola, August 2016
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