Psari Plaki

or Baked fish with tomatoes and onions

I had a few friends over for a pot luck dinner last week, and I wanted to make something simple and non-meat dish, and I made this Greek baked fish dish adapted from great Paula Wolfert‘s Mediterranean Cooking (page 86). It is one of the simplest and fool-proof recipes that I have tried, and certainly one of the easiest in Wolfert’s book.  We had the fish with H.’s Israeli couscous and E.’s beet and carrot salad, which went very well with the fish.  As requested by H., here’s the recipe adjusted for 8 servings.

8 fish steaks or fillets (I used red snapper, but any firm mild-tasting white fish will do)
Lemon juice
salt
2/3 cup olive oil
6 cups chopped onion (3 medium size onions)
28 oz. canned tomato sauce
2/3 cup chopped parsley
2 tsp chopped oregano
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/2 cup sweet red wine (I used port)
2/3 cup bread crumbs

  1. Wash the fish. Rub with lemon juice and rinse. Rub with salt and pepper and let stand 10 minutes. Rinse again and drain.  Do not skip this step.  Make the fish taste fresh and flesh firm after cooked.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Make the tomato sauce by first sauteeing onion in a skillet with olive oil.  When onion is soft, add the tomato sauce, parsley, oregano, allspice and wine.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cook, covered, 15 minutes.
  4. Arrange the fish in an oiled baking dish. Pour the sauce over the fish.  Sprinkle the surface with bread crumbs and dribble over a little oil.  Set on the middle rack of the oven and bake 30-40 minutes until the fish is cooked and the brown crust is formed.
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