Monday, January 09, 2012

Recipe for Baked Halibut with Sour Cream, Parmesan, and Dill Topping

Baked Halibut with Sour Cream, Parmesan, and Dill Topping
This is one of my favorite fish recipes, and perfect for a Phase One dinner.

(In January I'm featuring a Month of Daily Phase One recipes, and this way to cook halibut that I first posted in 2010 is something I'd love for dinner even when I'm not doing phase one.)

This recipe for halibut baked with a topping of sour cream, Parmesan cheese, garlic, dill, and green onions has six main ingredients besides salt and pepper, so it barely misses the cut for my category of Easy South Beach Recipes with Five Ingredients or Less, but in spite of that this must be about the easiest way in the world to cook fish. I splurged on halibut, since my Costco started carrying it again, but you could make this with any type of mild white fish.

As you can see from the photos, my pieces of halibut were quite thick, so I used a digital meat thermometerto tell when the fish was done. If you don't have one of those, cook fish until it's firm, but not hard to the touch. This was a delicious and impressive-looking dinner that would be perfect to serve to guests, but also easy enough to make for yourself if you've had a rough day and just need something quick and tasty for dinner.


Any recipe for cooking fish that's been refrigerated or frozen should start with letting the fish come to room temperature. Of course in land-locked Utah I'm using frozen halibut, so I thawed it overnight in the refrigerator. When I was ready to cook the halibut, I used a paper towel to press down on the fish and draw out some of the water, then let it come to room temperature in these little baking dishes, which were perfect for this recipe. You can also bake it in a flat casserole dish if you don't have individual ones.

Slice enough green onions to make 3 T sliced green onions, then set aside 1 T for the topping and very finely chop the rest.

Mix together the sour cream, garlic powder, dill weed, finely grated Parmesan cheese, and finely chopped green onion. Dill weed is dried dill leaves, but if you had fresh dill I would definitely use that and just increase the amount a little.

When the fish has come to room temperature, season each piece with a little salt and fresh ground black pepper, then use a rubber scraper to spread a thin coating of the sour cream mixture over the top of each piece of fish. You want the topping to be an even thickness all the way across each piece.

Timing will depend on the thickness and type of fish you're using, but I cooked these thick halibut pieces for about 24 minutes to get the temperature to reach 145F, the temperature recommended on the package of frozen halibut. The fish was still moist but perfectly cooked.

Baked Halibut with Sour Cream, Parmesan and Dill Topping
(Makes 2 servings, but can easily be doubled, recipe inspired by an idea from Six Ingredients Or Less: Low-Carb Cooking by Carlean Johnson.)

Ingredients:
2 pieces halibut or other mild white fish, thawed if frozen and patted dry with paper towels
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
3 T sour cream (use low-fat sour cream for South Beach Diet)
1/4 tsp. garlic powder (can use 1/2 tsp. finely minced fresh garlic, but the garlic powder was easy)
1/4 tsp. dill weed (dried dill leaves)
2 T finely ground Parmesan cheese
3 T sliced green onion (about 3 green onions)

Instructions:
Thaw frozen halibut overnight in refrigerator, then place in baking dish and blot dry with paper towels. Let the halibut come to room temperature while you prep other ingredients. Preheat oven to 375F/190C.

Slice 3 T green onions, then measure 2 T and finely chop them. Reserve the other 1 T sliced onions to garnish the cooked dish.

In a small bowl, stir together the sour cream, garlic powder, and dill weed. Stir in the finely grated Parmesan cheese and green onions. When fish has come to room temperature, use a rubber scraper to spread an even coating of this topping over each piece of the fish, using all the topping mixture.

Bake fish until the internal temperature reaches 145F/62C, or until fish pieces feel firm but not hard to the touch. (Use a fork to press down to test.) I baked my thick pieces of halibut for 24 minutes, but other types of fish or thinner pieces will probably cook more quickly. Serve hot, sprinkled with remaining sliced green onions.


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South Beach Suggestions:
This is a perfect low-glycemic main dish suitable for any phase of the South Beach Diet. The amount of low-fat sour cream and Parmesan cheese per serving here are well within South Beach diet guidelines, so you can eat this as often as you'd like. For phase one, I would serve this with something like Roasted Broccoli with Garlic and Mary's Perfect Salad. For phase two or three, you could add Lake Powell Spicy Rice or Farro with Mushrooms, Thyme, and Balsamic Vinegar.

More Phase One Recipes for Halibut You Might Like:
Grilled Halibut with Garlic Cilantro Sauce from Kalyn's Kitchen
Grilled Halibut with Cumin and Lime from Kalyn's Kitchen
Grilled Halibut with Southwestern Rub and Tomatillo Salsa from Kalyn's Kitchen
Steamed Halibut with Roasted Porcini, Sea Bean and Lemongrass Sauce from WrightFood
Baked Halibut in Foil Packets from The Kitchn
Poached Halibut with Sweet Garlic, Parsley, and Lemon from Orangette
Grilled Halibut with Chimichurri from Je Mange la Ville
(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)counter customizable free hit

58 comments:

Maria said...

I love the dishes you used. I am sure the topping makes this an extra special halibut meal.

Chris said...

This is my kind of dish! I love all the flavors here, love halibut. Looks fantastic!

Peter M said...

Looks fab and just enough cheese for flavouring/not interfere with halibut's delicate taste.

Dara said...

Great photo! Even though I don't care for fish it looked appetizing to me.

Susan from Food Blogga said...

That fish looks exceptionally good, Kalyn. And, as I'm sure you know, fish isn't terribly photogenic.

myfrenchkitchen said...

A beautiful recipe, Kalyn! One just WANTS to make it...
Ronelle

Rev. Biggles said...

Oh boy, that'd be great with some bacon crunchies on top!

xo, Biggles

FabFrugalFood said...

Using sour cream is genius! We'll be eating this tonite at my house!

Donna
fabfrugalfood.com

DineInDiva said...

That looks absolutely delicious!

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

I have to admit that even here in coastal Rhode Island, I buy some fish at Costco. I think their salmon is great, too.

Cookin' Canuck said...

I appreciate how easy this dish is - perfect for a busy weeknight! I have never topped my fish with sour cream, but I imagine it provides the same creamy, flavorful topping that mayonnaise does.

PJ said...

wow, baked halibut is looking so delicious! I love halibuts but almost always fresh halibut is so costly.. but I guess I should look at frozen ones and may be they are more affordable. This looks great, nice presentation and a nice click too.

DailyChef said...

Wow, what a perfect looking dish. I love adding sour cream to dishes!

Joanne said...

I usually get my fish frozen from Trader Joe's and it is super affordable. This looks like a fabulous recipe. Simple yet packed with flavor. Delicious.

Winnie said...

I absolutely love your photo and the recipe looks terrific. Have you tried substituting Greek yogurt for the sour cream? I wonder if it would be as good...thanks Kalyn!

Janice said...

My 10-year-old daughter isn't a fan of fish but loves sour cream and Parmesan. This may be just the recipe to entice her to eat seafood! Thanks!

Kalyn said...

Thanks everyone for the nice feedback on this recipe and the photo; glad people are liking the sound of it. I think cod would be a good substitute for halibut too, I like that idea. If I was making it for people who aren't that big on fish, I'd use thinner pieces so they get more of the topping in each bite.

Christine said...

This looks like a delicious way to cook fish. I'm saving it now.

A Year on the Grill said...

What a great recipe, and incredible presentation

Lea Ann said...

Great photo! This looks so easy and wonderful. Thanks for this recipe. I'll be making it soon.

Katrina said...

Halibut is my favorite fish! This looks de-lish.
I'm a little scared now to buy frozen halibut. I took a cooking class about fish and the chef told us one fish she would never buy frozen is halibut. She said in order for them to freeze it, they pack it full of liquid. I was a little bummed that she said that, because I take all this chef's classes and she's pretty smart, but I had been buying frozen halibut before that and now I'm afraid to. That said, yours look like really nice pieces and I don't think the ones I was getting were that nice. Anyway, she said she would only ever buy fresh halibut, but it's sure darn expensive!
Whatever the case, the stuff on top sounds great.

Mrs. L said...

I think I may actually like this. Good for the not so fond of fish dishes person!

jen said...

this looks so delicious, thank goodness for tofutti sour cream :)

Kalyn said...

Katrina, I'm sure there's no doubt that fresh halibut would be better, but it's not an option for a lot of people, and this halibut was really quite good. I did use a paper towel and blot it dry.

I do think this would be a good dish for people who aren't big on fish, because halibut is so mild and the topping adds a lot of flavor.

Great idea to use tofutti sour cream for people who can't have dairy.

MamaRae said...

this was amazing. and so easy and quick! my picky husband and sons (ages 4 and 1) even ate it up with delight! this recipe is definitely being added to permanent rotation on fish nights. i replaced the dill with tarragon and used fresh minced garlic to suit my tastes. i served oven-roasted potatoes (and a veggie) alongside this and got rave reviews. THANKS!

Kalyn said...

MamaRae, I do like the idea of using tarragon in this! Glad you liked it.

Cynthia said...

Oh Kalyn, I am definitely going to try this recipe... will have to try it with another type of fish though as we do not get halibut here.

Cara said...

This is going to sound kind of crazy, but while I'm pretty comfortable with things like salmon and tuna and swordfish, I never seem to know what to do with a simple white fish. And guess what? I happen to have some sour cream to use up so I might try this early next week! Thank you!

potrron said...

I love halibut, and this will be in my recipe box for a long time, thanks for the sharing.

Kalyn said...

So glad that this idea is appealing to people. I do think the milder types of fish with less distinct flavor can be more challenging, agreed.

Rebecca said...

Just found your blog! I cannot wait to follow along because this recipe just looks divine! :) Thanks for sharing

Anne said...

Oh my goodness. This was fabulous! Halibut is my favorite fish and the topping complements it perfectly. YUMMY!!

http://gullogoodies.blogspot.com/2010/03/baked-halibut.html

Kalyn said...

Anne, so glad to hear it was a hit at your house.

dun said...

This is my pick of baked halibut recipes from the many I perused. Delicious. Thanks.

Kalyn said...

Dun, so glad you liked it.

Justin said...

I made this but used talapia instead of halibut, it was amazingggg :)

Kalyn said...

Justin, great idea to use halibut! So glad you enjoyed it.

Emily A. said...

Just made this for a late dinner tonight. WOW. Super creamy fish. Fantastic flavors. I seasoned the tilapia (substituted for halibut) with black pepper, pinch of salt, and pinch of sumac on both sides and drizzled with olive oil before putting on the sour cream mixture. DELICIOUS!!! Husband had seconds. Served it with brown rice and sauteed mushrooms. This recipe will be a staple.

Kalyn said...

Emily, so glad you liked it. Love the idea of seasoning the fish with Sumac!

Annette said...

This is absolutely beautiful. Thanks for the recipe. I can't wait to try it.

Jamie said...

Oh, Kalyn, this recipe will even get me cooking fish! I'm always afraid to cook fish so we don't eat it often enough. A flavorful, simple recipe. Perfect!

Cheoy Lee said...

This looks incredibly flavourful and good for you as well - a definite bonus in my book.

Kalyn said...

Annette, Jamie, and Cheoy, glad you like it.

Deborah said...

I'm loving the topping on this!

kellypea @ sass & veracity said...

I love halibut and we don't eat it enough. Wonderful dish -- I'm thinking I just may need to start treating myself to recipes like this for lunch. I'll soon be a tax season widow, so no dinner with the hubster. I just happen to have those baking dishes, too!

Vijitha said...

Hello Kalyn
This is Vijitha and I reached out to be few months back on South beach diet and you very kindly wrote back to me. Hope you remember me. I lost close to 22 pounds and I still have a long way to go. I noticed that you are one of the speakers in campblog away and I am planning to attend it. I am so excited to meet you in person. Yay!!!

Kalyn said...

Thanks Deborah. Easy and tasty!

Kelly I would love this for lunch!

Hi Vijitha,
Way to go on the 22 pounds! Look forward to meeting you at Camp BlogAway; I think it is going to be a lot of fun.

Andrea C. said...

This looks great! I'll be making this next week for sure!

pressingtotheprize said...

I made this recipe tonight with Tilapia filets, so I didn't bake them for as long. I also added some "Mixed-Up Salt" which I use in lots of things and my husband was pretty impressed! He said I should make it again and he doesn't even really like fish! Thanks!
Bri

Emily A. said...

I did a spin-off of this recipe tonight. Seasoned the fish with salt, pepper, and garlic. For the creamy layer, I did a bit of cream cheese with mayo. Then a layer of paper thin apple slices for a bit of sweetness, and then layered raw onion rungs (is that even the right word?! I'm talking about pulling apart the onion slices so you have arcs...) Cooked that until the fish was just about done, then added Parmesan and green onions on top and put that under the broiler for a few minutes. This was delicious, and I was able to use up miscellaneous ingredients in the refrigerator!

beti said...

it looks so beautiful, simple and delicious! the colors are amazing and it is such a nice way to have fish

Amanda Myers said...

delicious!! made it tonight, using fresh garlic and fresh dill. Will definitely make again! My only gripe (not Kalyn's fault!) is that two smallish halibut filets (frozen) were $24! I MUST check out costco's selection. (I live in Georgia and went to Publix.)

Kalyn said...

Amanda, even at Costco halibut has gotten really expensive but I do love to have it occasionally for a treat.

the "G" battery said...

My husband and I have gotten back on track with South Beach this month and I wanted to thank you for providing such a great variety of meal ideas! We have used several of your recipes this month, including this one, and each one has been received with enthusiasm by my entire family. My picky dh keeps commenting, "I feel like I shouldn't like this but it's so delicious!" High praise for some delicious food. :)

Katie said...

I am so excited to try this. My step-dad went fishing up in Alaska a little while ago and brought back so much Halibut. I am not a fish fan at all but I have grilled some of the Halibut and it was so yummy. I am making this tonight for my dad's birthday and I really can't wait! Thank you for sharing

Truth said...

I made this tonight and it was delicious! Thank you.

Karla said...

Found this on Pinterest! Yay Pinterest. Looks absolutely delicious. Trying to get my husband to try more fish dishes. I think this might do the trick. Thanks.

scastell01 said...

Saw this on Pin and decided to give it a shot. Wasn't happy with the Halibut selection so opted to go with Corvina (California Sea Bass). It was scrumptious, thanks so much for the recipe!

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