Pan Seared Sea Bass

Seared Sea Bass

I first launched this site back in 2012 when I was doing research on Pinterest and writing my first book for print. While there was no shortage of tasty recipes posted back then, food photography was not a skill for which I had demonstrated even a lick of talent. That meant the pictures I posted with my recipes tended to be…lackluster. At best. Ok, they were awful.

That’s why one of my goals has been to take the time to remake the best recipes so I can snap better pictures and update them on the blog. One of the recipes I had planned to update was the recipe for Stuffed Dover Sole. It’s probably one of Matt’s favorite recipes of all time, but the pictures make it look like something out of one of those terrible skinny hardback cookbooks from the 50’s you might find in your grandmother’s kitchen. You know, the ones that always had a salmon mousse recipe in a salmon shaped Jell-O mold? *shudder*

The challenge with remaking the Dover Sole recipe is that I need to go to Trader Joe’s to get Dover Sole. The nearest Trader Joe’s is about a 40-minute drive on a good traffic day. (That’s why my Trader Joe’s basket tends to have eight bags of Potstickers, half a dozen jars of natural peanut butter, five or six boxes of Puffins and a few frozen packages of Dover Sole…gotta stock up!)

After finally making the trek all the way up there, you can imagine my chagrin when I realized they were completely out of Dover Sole. In fact, the closest thing they had left was Sea Bass. While I like a nice piece of Chilean Sea Bass, this Sea Bass was longer, flatter and looked more like Dover Sole, so I gave in and bought it, thinking I’d give it a whirl.

Pan Fried Sea Bass

Then it came time to MAKE the recipe and my day went completely wonky. Deadlines, life and all sorts of everything else got in the way, making it pretty much impossible for me to have time to make stuffed sea bass. So…I decided to pan fry it instead, motivated by the knowledge that fish can’t exactly sit around in your fridge waiting for you to have free time.

This recipe was more miss than hit for me, but I’m not a big fish eater. Give me some tilapia, sole, or Mahi Mahi and I’m happy…but you can keep your Salmon, Tuna and pretty much anything else that tastes like fish to yourself. So take my opinion with a grain of salt. My parents loved it, and Matt thought it was pretty tasty as well.

Pan Seared Sea Bass
On the table in under 20 minutes.
Cuisine: American
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 4-6 Thin Sea Bass filets, about 4-6oz each
  • 1 Lemon
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 2 T olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  1. Rinse filets and pat dry with a paper towel. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Slice lemon into wedges and set aside.
  3. Heat butter and olive oil in a flat bottom frying pan over medium-high heat.
  4. Place filets in skillet, skin side down.
  5. Fry fish for 3 minutes, squeezing a lemon wedge over each one before flipping carefully in the pan.
  6. Place lid on the pan and give the fish another 3-5 minutes, cooking until it flakes easily with a fork.
  7. Serve with lemon wedges.