Seared Chilean Sea Bass with Potatoes & Herb Sauce

    Seared Chilean Sea Bass with Potatoes & Herb Sauce - Make a beautiful, healthy restaurant-quality dish at home in 17 minutes. |

In this monthly series, I commit to cooking whatever is on the cover of Bon Appetit, Saveur or maybe some other food magazine. There’s a reason these particular dishes are on the cover – they’re usually the best recipes in the magazine.

I totally crushed on the cover of Bon Appetit this month. In one image, one headline, one cover, it summed up what I aim to do with this blog – teach people how to cook restaurant-quality food at home. I was already in love with this beautiful plate of healthy food, but when I realized I could pull it all together in less than 20 minutes? Even bigger crush. Here’s how you can make this dish like the home chef that you are.

Bon Appetit April 2014

Minutes 1-4: Realize you don’t have a juicer to make the green juice. Shrug your shoulders, pull out your blender, and puree all of the juice ingredients. Dump the resulting herb smoothie into a fine-mesh strainer and set it over a bowl – the green juice drips into the bowl. Success. Chef Trick: Work with the equipment you have to make what you need.

Minute 5: Get super lazy about boiling potatoes and decide to microwave them instead. Scrub them, put them in a bowl and zap them. Chef Trick: Take shortcuts. Sometimes.

Seared Chilean Sea Bass with Potatoes & Herb Sauce - Make a beautiful, healthy restaurant-quality dish at home in 17 minutes. |

Minute 6: Get out a skillet and pre-heat it on the stove. Pat the Chilean sea bass dry and season it with salt. Chef Tricks: Always start with a screaming hot pan when cooking fish. Always start with dry fish. Always season with salt.

Minutes 7 – 13: Place the fish skin-side down in the screaming hot pan. Crispy skin is the best! Turn it and cook it a few minutes longer. While this is happening, get the yogurt out of the fridge and wash and trim your scallions. Chef Trick: Don’t just stand around and watch your food cook. Multitask and work on the next step of the recipe.

Seared Chilean Sea Bass with Potatoes & Herb Sauce - Make a beautiful, healthy restaurant-quality dish at home in 17 minutes. |

Minutes 14 – 17: Transfer fish to a plate to rest, put the scallions in the skillet for a quick char. Gather all of the elements and assemble the plates: green juice, potatoes, yogurt, fish and scallions. Go all Picasso on that plate and make it pretty. Chef Trick: A beautiful presentation never goes out of style, even at home.

Seared Chilean Sea Bass with Potatoes & Herb Sauce - Make a beautiful, healthy restaurant-quality dish at home in 17 minutes. |


Seared Chilean Sea Bass with Potatoes & Herb Sauce

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 7 minutes


For the Green Sauce:

  • 2 celery stalks, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups packed fresh cilantro
  • 1 leek (dark green top only), roughly chopped
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Pinch of kosher salt

For the Potatoes, Fish & Assembly:

  • 1 pound small fingerling potatoes
  • 4 pieces (4 ounces each) Chilean sea bass
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 scallions, trimmed
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • Cilantro sprigs for garnish


  1. Make the Green Sauce: Puree all ingredients in blender until smooth. Pour into a fine-mesh strainer set over a medium bowl. Let sit, stirring mixture in strainer occasionally so all juice drains into bowl; discard solids.
  2. Place potatoes in medium microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high 4 minutes or until tender (or boil potatoes on stovetop, if desired).
  3. Heat large skillet over medium-high heat until skillet is very hot. Pat fish dry with paper towel and season with salt. Pour oil in pan; place fish skin side-down in pan. Cook 4 minutes or until skin is very crisp. Turn and cook 2 minutes longer. Transfer fish to plate.
  4. Place scallions in same skillet; cook 1 minute or until slightly softened and charred in spots.
  5. Divide yogurt, potatoes, fish and scallions between 4 plates. Spoon green juice around fish and garnish with cilantro.

Adapted from Bon Appetit

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For more recipes straight from the cover of food magazines, check out my Cook The Cover Archive!


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  1. I’m not going to be cooking this cover (student budget + pricey fish= no go) but I really love your tips and the dish looks beautiful! I completely agree with you about presentation and home cooking. I’m no trained chef but it is so much easier to eat healthier when the plate of food on your table looks good!

    • Just a note – I only had one piece of Chilean Sea Bass, but I had some frozen cod filets, so I thawed one of those and made the Sea Bass for my husband (his favorite) and had the cod myself. The cod was good too and much more budget friendly.

  2. Thanks so much, Mahdis. And I totally remember being on a student budget, believe me. I wish I would have started a blog back then with all of the cheap recipes my roommates and I used to make!

  3. Damn, Lori, you totally killed it. #likeaboss. Your photo looks exactly like the BA cover, hell, even better! I love all of your tips ‘n tricks, although I fear that if I look away from my cooking fish, it’ll be burnt when I finally look back at it. Baby steps!

    • Oh no, give yourself more credit than that, girl. You could easily pull this together, no burning allowed. Actually, I think one of the biggest mistake people make when cooking fish (myself included, even still) is trying to flip it too early. If it sticks, it’s not ready!

  4. We finally had sea bass where I shop and I totally….totally paused because I really, really wanted to buy some. So, I’m going to bookmark this recipe for our very next special occasion. 🙂

  5. Trying to recreate your recipe for a dinner party. When do you flip the fish over and how long to you cook on the non skin side?

    • Hi Jacklyn! Please refer to step 3 of the formal recipe at the bottom of the post. Please let me know if you have any other questions. Hope your dinner party is great!

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