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The Hirshon Israeli Fish in Spicy Tomato Sauce - חריימה

The Hirshon Israeli Fish in Spicy Tomato Sauce – חריימה

  • Total Time: 0 hours


Units Scale
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced small
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon Aleppo red pepper flakes, or to taste
  • Good pinch freshly ground cloves
  • Good pinch freshly ground caraway
  • 1/2 tablespoon freshly ground cumin
  • 3 bay leaves, or 1/2 teaspoon ground
  • 3/4 tablespoon paprika
  • 1/4 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1 bunch flat parsley
  • 1 small bunch cilantro + extra for garnish
  • 1/2 Moroccan preserved lemon, skin only, rinsed
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced thin lengthwise
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 8 pieces thick-cut Chilean sea bass, black cod (TFD preferences) or use thick-cut salmon or halibut fillets. In Israel, Amberjack is the classic fish used in this recipe


  1. Pat fish dry and season generously with salt and pepper.
  2. In a frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the fish, skin side down, and fry until the skin is brown and crisp, about 4 minutes.
  3. Flip the fish and cook the flesh side for about 30 seconds and remove. Do not cook through.
  4. In a large wide-bottom pot, bring the water, oil, tomatoes, tomato paste, red pepper flakes, cloves, cumin, caraway, bay leaves, and paprika to a boil.
  5. Meanwhile, coarsely grind the garlic, parsley, cilantro, and preserved lemon in a food processor using the pulse button. Add the ground mixture to the pot and stir. Add the red pepper and the fish, and bring to a boil.
  6. Reduce the temperature to medium and cook covered for 10-15 minutes. Transfer the fish onto a platter with a slotted spoon. check the cooking liquids in the pot: If they are too thin, reduce them at high temperature until thickened. Pour the sauce over the fish. Serve hot or at room temperature, making sure you top each serving with the sauce.
  7. Garnish with cilantro. Serve with Israeli couscous on the side.
  • Prep Time: 0 hours
  • Cook Time: 0 hours