Seared Sea Bass on Baba Ghanoush |

Seared Sea Bass on Baba Ghanoush

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"Mediterranean sea bass is known in Egypt as ‘arous’ or ‘loot’ and is usually eaten fried, cooked in the oven or added to soups. For this recipe, we are using small pieces of sea bass and combining it with baba ghanoush to be eaten as bite-sized mezza."

Serves 6 as part of a mezza selection


For the baba ghanoush:

  • 250g aubergines
  • ½  red pepper, diced
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon tahina paste
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • Salt

For the sea bass:

  • 200g sea bass fillets, skin on
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • Pinch of cumin seeds
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander
  • Salt and freshly ground black
  • Pepper

To serve:

  • 2–3 pitta or flat breads
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Seeds of ½  pomegranate
  • Rocket (gargeer)
  • Fresh dill, chopped


1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F.
2. To make the baba ghanoush, roast the aubergines for about 30 to 35 minutes until they are really soft on the inside, then peel them when they are cool enough to handle.
3. Mash the aubergines well with a fork and mix in the diced pepper. Season with salt and add the lemon juice, tahina paste, olive oil, vinegar and crushed garlic and combine well. Set aside to cool.
4. Cut the sea bass into strips, about 2cm x 10cm, leaving the skin on. In a dish, mix together 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, the garlic, cumin, lemon juice, coriander and salt and pepper to taste. Add the sea bass strips and marinate for about 10 minutes.
5. Cut the pitta breads into 10cm circles and fry in the 2 tablespoons of olive oil for a couple of minutes until golden.
6. Remove the sea bass from the marinade and pat dry on paper towels. Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan and sauté the fish, skin side down, until the skin is crispy, then turn to the skinless side and lower the heat to cook for 1 minute.
7. To assemble, place a dollop of baba ghanoush on the pitta bread circles, scatter with the pomegranate seeds, place a sea bass strip on top and garnish with the rocket and fresh dill.

For more recipes by Cairo Kitchen by Suzanne Zeidy, £25 (Photography by Jonathan Gregson & published by Hardie Grant) click here.