This is the loveliest, simplest and lightest summery dish. I have modified this recipe which originally came from Rachel Ray. The Sicilian flavor combo of orange, red onion, oregano and fennel is such a stunningly tangy combination with the sauteed fish.
4 (6 ounce) halibut fillets
Extra virgin olive oil, 2 tbsp plus some for drizzling
Salt and pepper
Grated rind of 2 oranges, keep the rest of the orange for the warm salad part of the recipe
3 to 4 medium bulbs of fennel, quartered, core removed and thinly sliced
1 large red onion, or two smaller ones, thinly sliced
3 tbsp red wine vinegar, a couple of splashes
A good handful of Italian parsley, chopped
1 1/2 heaped tbsp chopped fresh oregano leaves.
Heat the oven to 450 F
Drizzle the olive oil over the fish and season with the salt, pepper and grated orange rind. Let the fish sit in the marinade to soak up the oils of the grated orange zest while you prepare the oranges.
Peel the oranges as you would a melon; cut off the ends, stand them upright and cut the pith in thin strips from top to bottom. Cut the orange across into thin slices.
Put about 3 or 4 tbsp olive oil in an ovenproof frying pan over medium high heat. When hot, add the halibut and sear on one side for about 5 minutes.
While it is searing, preheat another skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil to the pan, about two turns of the pan, then add the fennel and onions, season well with salt and pepper and cook 5 to 8 minutes until seared and beginning to soften.
While the fennel is cooking, turn the halibut and sear for about 3 minutes.
Put the frying pan with the halibut into the top of the hot oven for about 4 minutes while you’re finishing off the fennel dish and plating it.
Add the vinegar to the fennel mixture and give the pan a shake. Remove from the heat and toss in the orange slices, the parsley and oregano. Mix together gently.
Adjust seasoning and serve it on dinner plates topped with the halibut.