Shopping Cart

Pan Seared Opah with Warm Caprese Salad

Posted by Kira DeRito on

This recipe came together very serendipitously - everything was on hand and just needed to be tossed together in a happy coincidence. I love a traditional caprese of fresh sliced tomato, fresh mozzarella and fresh chiffonade basil, but it's just cold enough that I wanted a warmer dish for dinner. The trick is to heat the tomatoes and cheese at the very end, but not actually cook them... and it wasn't too difficult to achieve the results I was hoping for. Give it a try!


  • 6 to 8 oz Opah per adult serving, skin removed
  • salt
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 3 T butter
  • 2 large ripe tomatoes, chopped
  • 8 oz fresh mozzarella, chopped or use the 'pearl' size balls
  • 10 fresh basil leaves
  • 2 medium shallots
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • crusty bread for dipping

This recipe utilizes a single pan, so to keep everything at an appealing temperature when serving, start by preparing all of your items for the caprese topping to set aside so that when the fish is done you are ready to hustle to make the veggies before your fish gets cold. Chop the tomato, drain and chop your cheese if needed, chiffonade the basil (roll and slice thin), mince the garlic, chop the shallots and get the wine and butter out to have ready.

Now, the fish goes first! In a large fry pan with a lid, drizzle the olive oil and heat to medium high/high temp - we're going to be looking to sear somewhat quickly in a hot pan. Remove the skin from the fish (if we haven't already done that for you - just ask us!) and salt liberally on both sides. Gently place the fish in the pan and set your timer for 3 minutes. Don't fuss with it while it's searing so that you can create a bit of a crust - and when the timer alerts you, flip the fish and add two tablespoons of butter. Sear for an additional 3 minutes on the second side, spooning the browned butter over the fish once or twice.

When your searing time is up, turn the heat off and place a lid on the fry pan and let the fish sit for another one minute. Transfer the fish to a plate, and get ready to make the warm salad!

Using the same pan, turn the heat back on medium-high and add the second tablespoon of butter. Slide in the garlic and shallots and sauté for about 3 minutes or until the shallots are translucent. Add the wine and stir, then add the tomatoes, cheese and basil and toss it all together. Turn off the heat within 30 seconds of adding the last ingredients so that you don't melt the cheese *too* much, but everything gets warmed up and lovely! Give your caprese a good sprinkle of salt, a final toss, and then scoop generously over the top of the fish.

Serve immediately with crusty bread and a glass of white wine - the Oyster Bay sauvignon blanc is a particular favorite of mine right now, and was lovely with this dish. Enjoy! 

Older Post Newer Post

1 comment

  • Made it. Family loved it. We are a herd of spicy lovers so I added 1 teaspoon of juice from our home canned jalapeños. Outstanding recipe for main coarse caprese.

    Please add me to your newsletter listserve.

    J-T Lawton

    J-T Lawton on

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published