Almond crusted baked fish is an incredibly flavorful and healthy Persian dish that is packed with herbs, spices and barberries.
Baked Fish With Almond Crust
This recipe uses herbs and spices that are perfect for mild flavored fish such as whiting, tilapia and cat fish. You could use Salmon or Trout too.
Almonds add a certain richness, texture and a nutrition punch. I have used the beautiful barberries here and what can I say about them! Just read on and the next thing is that you may find yourself at a market buying them to make this almond herb crusted baked fish.
Barberries are sweet and sour berries that are available in their dried form in Persian and Middle eastern stores with the Persian name "Zereshk". These berries that look like tiny ruby red jewels are a very important part of Persian cuisine, giving a vibrant presentation to many classic dishes, and imparting tiny bursts of tangy flavor. I am surely in love with these dried berries and use them often.
For centuries, barberries have been used in traditional medicine for their therapeutic effects. Several studies have been carried out and research still continues. These tasty berries are a rich source of phytochemicals with a varied number of attributes such as: antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic, hypolipidemic and hypoglycemic.
Some studies showed that barberries actually increase insulin sensitivity, inhibit adipogenesis and therefore act as a hypoglycemic and anti-obesity agent. Suffice it to say that these berries add incredible taste to dishes along with possible health benefits.
Fish is a healthy lean protein option. Herbs, of course add a lot of taste and health benefit. As for Almonds, I have discussed about these nutritious nuts in my post about Anise Almond Honey Biscotti. And I have used it for Rose Rice Custard with Pomegranate Jelly and Saffron Yogurt Rice with Chicken, Spinach and Prunes.
And the bonus is that it does not even take much time to make this incredible Almond Herb Crusted Baked Fish for your family!!
More Fish Recipes:
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Almond Herb Crusted Baked Fish
- 4 fillet whiting or cat fish, 1 pound
- 3/4 teaspoon salt adjust per taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic grated
- 3 tablespoons cilantro chopped
- 3 tablespoons dill chopped
- 3 tablespoons green onions chopped
- 3 tablespoons parsley chopped
- 1/4 cup almonds ground
- 2 tablespoons barberries dried
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes or 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander ground
- 2 pinches saffron ground and dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water
- Pat dry the cleaned and rinsed fish. Season with half the salt.
- Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet. Sauté the garlic just couple minutes, making sure not to brown, add the herbs and sauté few minutes until they wilt.
- Add the ground almonds, 1¾ tablespoons barberries, lemon juice, red pepper flakes, coriander powder, remaining salt and stir the mixture.
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Lay the fish fillet on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Dot the almond herb mixture all over the fillet and evenly spread it. Sprinkle the remaining oil and 3/4 tablespoon saffron water.
- Bake in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes until the fish flakes. The time varies with the fish and the thickness of the fillets. Once done, garnish with the remaining barberries and saffron water.
- Adjust seasoning and lemon juice to your taste. Serve this almond herb crusted baked fish with rice.
- Dried barberries need to be cleaned well. Remove the tiny stems and place the barberries in a colander and immerse in a bowl of cold water for about 20 minutes until all the sand settles in the bottom of the bowl. Rinse the barberries thoroughly couple of times to make sure there is no sand.
- If you do not have saffron, you may use 1/2 teaspoon turmeric and mix it with the almond herb mixture and proceed with the remaining steps.
- For this recipe I used the Aleppo red pepper flakes.
- Saffron, dried barberries, Aleppo red pepper flakes are available at Persian and middle eastern grocery stores or online.