Poached Halibut à la Provençale

halibut and vegetables


  • 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 Vidalia onion, diced
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 small zucchini, diced
  • 1 large red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and diced
  • 1 fennel bulb, diced, fronds reserved
  • 6 3-ounce halibut fillets (wild preferred)
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 3 shallots, minced
  • 1/4 cup dry sherry
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh chives
  • Juice of 1 lemon


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

To prepare the vegetables, heat a large sauté pan on medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the onion and cook for 3 minutes. Add 4 of the minced garlic cloves, the zucchini, red pepper, tomatoes and diced fennel and cook for 4 minutes. Transfer to a platter.

Place the halibut fillets in a bowl and toss them gently with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and the orange and lemon zests. Season with salt and pepper. Place the fillets in a large braising pan. Add the wine, shallots, remaining 2 garlic cloves, sherry, parsley, chives, and lemon juice and cook on medium heat for 4 minutes.

Cover the pan and bake in the oven for 12 to 14 minutes, or until halibut is cooked through.

Remove the fillets from the oven and transfer them with a slotted spoon onto the vegetables on the platter. Garnish with a few fronds of fennel. Strain the sauce from the braising pan through a fine-mesh sieve into a small serving bowl or sauceboat. Serve with the halibut.


6 servings


This recipe is courtesy of Chef Frank McClelland, world-class chef and owner of L’Espalier restaurant in Boston. He is one of the nation’s master chefs and was early to embrace the farm-to-table or "locavore" dining philosophy. This recipe is from his cookbook Wine Mondays: Simple Wine Pairings with Seasonal Menus.

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  • Nutrition Tip

    Fish, including the halibut in this recipe, is a great lean source of protein. It is low in saturated fat, and high in heart healthy omega 3 fats.

    Protein is an important part of your diet during treatment. It helps the body build new cells and repair damaged ones. Getting enough protein is important in helping your body handle the side effects of treatment or disease. Protein can also help energize you and prevent fatigue. Choosing lean sources of protein, like fish, is an important aspect of a healthy diet during and after treatment. We suggest wild fish whenever possible.

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