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Samak bil tahina

This dish takes 30 minutes from start to finish! You can’t beat that!

Although I love meat, I could happily be pescatarian. I absolutely love seafood in all of its forms! I especially love having seafood cooked in a Middle Eastern style, and in the Levant, it usually involves having a tahini-based sauce on the side.  Whether in the form of a dipping sauce, a tahini dressed salad, or, like in this case, the sauce the fish is cooked in, the combination of seafood and tahini is unique and works so well. It is almost like having a cream-based sauce without the cream!

With three toddlers, I am always looking for healthy and nutritious dishes that I can get on the table as fast and easily as possible. This dish takes 30 minutes from start to finish! You can’t beat that!

Samak bil tahina translates to fish in tahini and that is exactly what it is. This works best with white fish fillets, like cod or haddock, but feel free to use the fish you like best. I personally wouldn’t bake my salmon in the sauce, but this sauce is perfect to drizzle on top of your cooked fish or shrimp, or used as a dip, not only for seafood, but anything really.

I use both vinegar and lemon juice in the sauce because they each give a different type of sour taste and I like having both, but you could easily leave the vinegar out if you prefer. The garnishes in this dish are essential, so make sure you don’t leave out the parsley, it adds a nice freshness that cuts through the creaminess of the tahini, while the pine nuts add a nice crunch and texture. You can serve this with bread, rice, or even roasted potatoes. Enjoy!

Ingredients

Fish

350g white fish fillets

1 tbsp ground cumin

1 tbsp ground coriander

2 onions, halved and sliced

salt

pepper

Sauce

3-4 tbsp lemon juice

2 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp ground coriander

Salt

2 tbsp vinegar

1 1/2 cups tahini

½ cup chopped parsley

½ cup yogurt

1 tbsp garlic paste

Garnish

Pine nuts, toasted to garnish

Parsley, chopped to garnish

Instructions

  1. In a baking tray, place the fish and onions and mix together with the spices.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together the sauce ingredients and taste. Adjust to your personal liking.
  3. Pour the sauce over the fish, making sure it is spread evenly, cover and bake in the oven at 180C for 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake until golden brown, around 5 minutes.
  4. Garnish with parsley and pine nuts and serve with bread or rice and enjoy!
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