‘Fırında Levrek’ in English ‘Sea Bass at Oven’ is a vitamin-rich fish that can be found at almost every sea. You can either make it on the grill or at the oven. You can find ‘Levrek’ (sea bass) fish in Turkey at any season at any fish restaurant because culture fishery is a common business at the shores of Turkey so we don’t have any shortage of this type of fish in this part of the world. ‘Levrek‘ fish contains low-fat than most fish types so while cooking this fish, olive oil will be your best friend. In this article, I want to share the ‘Sea Bass at Oven ’ recipe and how and when the Turks include it to their cuisine with you.
The Story of Fırında Levrek
It took thousands of years for Turks to reach the Aegean Sea, Black Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea regions. Before then, Turks were only dependent on animal husbandry to survive. So for this reason, Turkish cuisine has more meat dishes than fish dishes. Turks tasted the salty sea fish later than many civilizations.
As you know from my previous writings; rock ovens (stone ovens) are very common in Turkish cooking culture. If you visit any village in Turkey, you can see rock ovens are still in use. It doesn’t matter if the village is inland or nearby the sea. So for this reason, Turks applied the same cooking method to the fish by cooking them in the rock ovens. That is why we called it ‘Fırında Leverk’. Today, some restaurants are still using rock ovens to cook fish in Turkey.
Where to eat?
I love the Aegean Sea more than the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. The sea life in the Aegean Sea is very diverse. Bodrum is the most well-known Touristic city in Turkey and I am visiting that city since 1987. We say for Bodrum ‘The Pearl of Aegean’. The restaurant that I am going to suggest is called ‘Barboom’ at Yalıkavak Village of Bodrum. It is a fine fish restaurant and I believe you will love it. The below recipe belongs to the head chef of that restaurant.
Fırında Levrek (Sea Bass at Oven)
- 2 sea bass 4x fillet
- 200 g cherry tomatoes
- 100 g shallots peel & keep it whole
- 2 clove garlic sliced
- 100 g green olive without pits
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 teaspoon thyme leaves
Preheat oven to 200 C (400 F). Wash the fillets and rinse them. Put the fillets on to the baking paper and start to season them with freshly ground black pepper and salt.
Put the whole shallots, sliced garlic cloves, thyme leaves, cherry tomatoes and green olives on top of the fillets. Pour the olive oil to the fillets and to the ingredients evenly and cook 45 minutes.
Tip: Garnish it with dill.