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Pan Seared Whitefish in Tahini Sauce

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Fish is often an under-appreciated dish, but this simple pan-fried white fish in creamy, garlicky tahini sauce with kale is a game changer!

White fish is an incredibly healthy protein that offers a much lighter flavor and less “fishy” taste than salmon. This particular dish can be thrown together quickly, in about 20 minutes and pairs well with roasted parmesan potatoes.

You might be tempted to purchase fish from the seafood department at your favorite grocery store, but before you do, I implore you to pay close attention to the tags on the display. More often that not, the “Fresh” seafood you think you’re purchasing has actually been previously frozen and costs more than if you just buy frozen to begin with from freezer section of grocery store.

Once frozen and thawed, fish should not be “refrozen”, it loses texture, often becoming mushy and it also loses significant flavor. In addition, if it’s not handle quickly and properly, it can develop harmful bacteria, which you might notice if the fish has developed a “fishier” than normal smell to it. If that’s the case, rinse the fish and let it set in a dish of cold milk for 10 minutes prior to cooking. If fish has any hint of ammonia smell to it, toss it immediately.

For this particular recipe, we prefer to use Haddock, but you can opt for any whitefish that you happen to have on hand, we’ve even used blue catfish with fantastic results.


You’ll Need:
Vegetable Oil, for frying
4 scallions
3-4 tbsp olive oil
2 lbs Haddock (or code, sea bass, tilapia, etc)
3/4 cup tahini
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 Heaping Tablespoon Minced garlic
1/2 cup warm water
1 bunch kale, stems discarded, leaves coarsely chopped

In a small bowl combine the tahini, lemon juice, garlic and water. Season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper, Set aside.

Heat about 2-3 TBS of vegetable oil (we generally use canola for cooking fish as olive oil burns too easily), add the sliced scallions and cook until browned. Transfer then to a dish lined with a paper towel to drain and immediately season with salt and pepper.

Add another 2 Tbs or so of oil to the hot pan and sear the fish. You may need to work in smaller batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. Once the fish has browned (on one side) gently transfer it to a plate.

Don’t cook it on both sides, it’s going to finish cooking in a moment!

Add another tablespoon or so of oil to the hot pan and add the kale, season with salt and pepper and cook until the kale begins to wilt.

Pour the prepared sauce over the kale, then immediately add the seared fish pieces (seared side up) in the pan. Gently spoon the sauce over the fillets while it finishes cooking. The fish should be opaque and flake easily with a fork.

Just prior to serving, top with the fried scallions.

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1 thought on “Pan Seared Whitefish in Tahini Sauce”

  1. It is safe to eat fish skin as long as it is clean and the scales have been removed completely. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends that adults consume 2–3 servings of fish a week (211 g) since fish is a great source of nutrients like iron and omega-3 fatty acids.


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