If you are looking for a dish that will impress or simply wanting to bring a touch of luxury to the dinner table, then this sea bream with garlic and chilli recipe is perfect for you.
Take a whole Sea Bream or Sea Bass fish and delicately spice with garlic, chilli, lemon and thyme before wrapping it in foil to oven bake.
How to Cook Sea Bream
In the video below, we will show you how to prepare and cook sea bream.
Or continue reading to learn more about the ingredients and methods used to cook this amazing fish dish.
Let's dive into the essential ingredients you'll need for this delicious sea bream cooked in foil recipe.
Whole sea bream is the best option for this recipe as it's a lovely meaty fish. Any supermarket fishmonger is a great place to source your fish and you can purchase them already gutted to make things easier, saving time and preventing mess.
Whole sea bass makes a great alternative and is cooked the same way.
Both sea bass or bream fish is be full of goodness and brimming with Omega - 3 fatty acids with a high Omega-3 to Omega-6 ratio.
If whole fish isn't your thing, you could buy sea bream fish fillets instead. Simply cook the same way but for half the time.
Garlic adds an aromatic flavour to your fish dish. We used fresh garlic finely minced, however, you could use a garlic puree for ease if you prefer.
Chillies add a lovely and powerful warmth to this baked sea bream fillet. Worried it will be too spicy? You can simply adjust the spice level to suit your taste.
We used fresh chillies and minced them but chilli puree is a great option if you are in a hurry or don't like handling fresh chilli.
Olive oil helps the fish to cook evenly and prevents it from sticking to the foil. We like the rich flavours olive oil adds. You can use whatever cooking oil you prefer, sunflower and vegetable oil works well.
Lemon is a classic ingredient for any fish dish and adds a sharp citrus tang. Fresh lemon, thinly sliced gives the best flavour but you could use a small splash of lemon juice instead.
We used fresh thyme in our recipe as it really goes well with the other flavours, alternatively you lemongrass, rosemary or oregano are great options. Don't forget to season with salt and pepper too!
You don't need much to make this delicious sea bream recipe. Cooking the fish in foil makes it really moist and tender, so you will need enough foil to wrap your fish in while it cooks and a sharp knife to score the fish.
Whole sea bass recipes may seem more like something you see on restaurant menus than in your own kitchen, but this dish is far easier than you may first believe, so crack open a bottle of your favourite white wine and get ready to try this delicious recipe.
Preparing the sea bream
Preheat your oven to 200℃ fan / 220°C / 425℉ / Gas Mark 7 so it is hot and ready when it is time to cook the sea bream.
You will need to gut your fish if you haven't bought one pre-done.
Start by placing each whole fish on a square of tin foil that is big enough to fold around the fish and make a parcel later.
You'll now want to score the fish by cutting slices through the skin and into the meat. This will create openings to allow the marinade to really soak into the sea bream, creating a truly flavourful dish.
Making the marinade
Use a spoon to mix your garlic, chillies and oil together in a small bowl.
Once they are well combined, use your spoon to scoop the marinade onto the fish. Spread it around, repeat on the other side too, until the whole sea bream is fully covered.
Make sure to really get your marinade into the cuts you made and into the cavity left when the fish was gutted.
Add your slices of lemon and some sprigs of thyme to the top of the skin and sprinkle the fish with salt and pepper.
Use the foil to wrap your sea bream into a parcel and get ready to cook.
Cooking the sea bream
Simply place your sea bream parcels on a baking tray in the centre of the oven and let your fish cook inside its parcel for 25-30 minutes, just enough time for a second glass of wine!
Serve straight from the oven for a fintastic fish dish that will truly wow.
For a light supper, we suggest a salad with cherry tomatoes, spring onions, and olives, creating delicate flavours that will go well with this sea bream recipe.
See more sea bream serving suggestions under the recipe card.
📖 Step by Step Recipe
Sea Bream With Garlic And Chilli
- 2 whole Sea Bream Gutted
- 2 cloves Garlic (minced) or 1 teaspoon garlic puree
- 2 Chillies (minced) or 1 teaspoon chilli puree
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 Lemon thinly sliced
- 4 sprigs Thyme
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven 200℃ fan / 220°C / 425℉ / Gas Mark 7.Place the 2 whole Sea Bream on to a square sheet of tin foil each, enough to wrap the fish up into a parcel later.
- Slice diagonal slices down both sides of the sea bream to make openings for the sauce to be rubbed inside
- Mix the 2 cloves Garlic (minced), 2 Chillies (minced), 1 tablespoon olive oil together in a bowl
- Cover the marinade all over each sea bream, and in the cuts you created earlier and inside the cavity left where the fishmonger has gutted the fish.
- Add slices of 1 Lemon and 4 sprigs Thyme and sprinkle a generous amount of Salt and Pepper.
- Wrap the tin foil into a parcel, place on a baking tray in the centre of the oven and cook for 25-30 mins at 200℃ fan / 220°C / 425℉ / Gas Mark 7.
- Serve with your choice of sides! Check the blog post for suggestions.Enjoy !!
Side Dishes for Fish
Consider serving your sea bream alongside some fresh, seasonal vegetables. Grains such as mushroom rice, saffron couscous, quinoa with vegetables or orzo are excellent choices to soak up sauce from the fish and add a satisfying textural element to your plate.
Although best served and eaten right away, you can store sea bream in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.
To reheat sea bream we suggest placing it inside a new parcel and cooking it in the oven until it is thoroughly heated throughout. You may want to drizzle a little olive oil over it to stop the fish drying out.
Yes, you will want to pat your sea bream dry with a paper towel first. Then you will need add extra olive oil to your marinade and coat the whole fish generously to prevent it sticking or becoming too dry.
If you like your fish to have a crispy outer. Open the foil parcel in the last ten minutes of cooking. Or fry on high heat in a pan for a minute on each side. Before or after cooking in the oven.
They both reach similar weight however the Sea Bream is longer and slimmer compared to the plumper Sea Bass.
There is only one species of sea bass and they can be caught many places. However, there are many different species of Bream.
In the UK it is farmed. So will always be great quality, different areas they will be called Gilthead bream, Oreata, Dorade or Dorada.
Yes, if you don't want to cook whole fish. Simply prepare sea bream fillets with the same marinade spread on the flesh, season, wrap in foil and cook for half the time at the same heat.
More Oven Baked recipes
Love this oven baked sea bream recipe? Give these other oven friendly recipes a go.