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Roasted Fish with Achiote, Potatoes, Chile Strips, and Orange Salsa

Serves: Makes 4 servings


  • Achiote Sauce:
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon chopped white onion
  • 12 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 12 teaspoon chile powder
  • 12 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1 (12-by-14-inch) piece achiote paste
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon flavorless vegetable oil

  • 1 pound yukon gold or any potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 12-inch wedges
  • 1 large white onion, cut into 1⁄8-inch wedges

  • Orange Salsa:
  • 1 large navel orange
  • 1 plum tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped red onion
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • Pinch of coarse salt
  • 114 pounds skinless firm fish fillet (such as halibut, ling cod, or red snapper), preferably in a single piece


For this recipe, use achiote paste (adobo de achiote). This typical dish of the Yucatán combines the earthytasting achiote with fish, potatoes, and a pretty, refreshing citrus salsa. Serve with a green vegetable or a tossed salad.

  1. Make the achiote sauce: Place the garlic, onion, salt, chile powder, orange zest, and achiote in a molcajete or other mortar and mash with a pestle until blended and the mixture becomes a paste. Gradually work in the orange juice and oil with the pestle. Alternatively, combine the ingredients in a blender or small food processor and process until smooth. set aside.

  2. Make the rajas and set aside.

  3. Preheat the oven to 400°F. In a medium bowl, combine the potatoes, onion slices, and half of the achiote sauce and stir to coat the potatoes. spread the potato mixture in a 9-by-13-inch terra-cotta baking dish or another type of baking dish. roast the potatoes, turning once at the midpoint, for 35 minutes, or until golden and almost tender. remove the baking dish from the oven.

  4. While the potatoes are roasting, make the orange salsa: Use a sharp, thin knife to cut the peel and all the white pith from the orange. Working over a bowl, cut along both sides of each segment to release it from the membrane, allowing the segments and the juices to drop into the bowl.

  5. Coarsely chop the orange segments and return them to the bowl with the juices. Add the tomato, onion, lime juice, cilantro, and salt, and stir gently to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt. let stand at room temperature until ready to serve.

  6. Brush one side of the fish with half of the remaining achiote sauce mixture. Push the potatoes to the edges of the baking dish, and place the fish, sauce side down, in the center of the dish. brush the top of the fish with the remaining sauce. Arrange the rajas on top of the fish, spacing them about 12 inch apart. rearrange the potatoes, placing some of them on top of the fish.

  7. Return the baking dish to the oven and roast for 15 minutes, or until the fish is opaque when cut into at the thickest part with a knife.

  8. Spoon the salsa over the fish and serve from the baking dish or transfer the fish to a platter and serve.

by Sur La Table & Andrews McMeel Publishing

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