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Get Gourmet with Mandarin & Fennel Baked Fish- Recipe

Mandarin and Fennel Baked Fish

Impress Your Guests With This Fish

It's not often that you can plate a restaurant quality fish with this much ease- delight your foodie tastebuds with a rich buttery sauce infused with roasted fennel and married with an unlikely and energising sweet and punchy mandarin. We love this recipe as it's deceptively impressive- when in actuality, all you need to do is throw this all in the oven and nail a delicious sauce in the pan.


Inspired by Gourmet Traveller's baked snapper recipe, we're opting out of the traditional mash, and bringing you a bold smashed potato side.

You can use any baby potatoes to create an addictive crunchy smash- we're using blue moon potatoes to give that unreal visual hit and contrast with the bold orange citrus of the fish.

Orange against a lovely tenderly baked white fish and purple smash are vibrant and bold, simply irresistible and full of intrigue on the plate together.

For the fish, we're using Australian Gold Band Snapper, but any flaky white fish with a decent thick fillet will be perfect. 

Fish with blue moon potatoes recipe
Timing is Key

This recipe is easy- and the key to getting it right is timing. The cardinal sin of fish is overcooking this delicate protein, and the secret to a perfect smashed potato is time. 

Don't skip the pre-boil of the potato- don't skip the pre-boil of any baked potato! Smashed potato is all about the contrast of textures, a lush smooth and soft inner makes a perfect pillow for the crunchy and sharp skin. This step gets things going and helps everything go smoothly. Roast on high for much longer than you would imagine, and then keep going for 20 minutes more. Then, only then, will you achieve the crispy, crackly outer crust with a creamy centre. You'll thank us later!

Pop your potatoes on the top rack of your oven and only when you are absolutely certain (taste test) they are done, add your fish onto the bottom rack and keep checking it during it's cook. We're using sustainably sourced line caught snapper, and when baked simply in this manner with olive oil and seasoning, it is easy to visibly check when it's ready.

Made fresh using ingredients available at Dirty Clean Food.

Ingredients for Baked Fish

For the Baked Fish;

  • 2 filets of flaky white fish of your choice (400g)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra to serve
  • Finely grated rind of 1 mandarin and 1/2 a lemon, plus lemon juice to serve
  • Thinly shaved fennel to serve

For Smashed Potatoes;

  • 400g floury baby potatoes
  • 50g butter, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • garlic chives, chopped to serve

For the Sauce;

  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 100 mandarin juice
  • 75ml lemon juice
  • 100g chilled butter, diced
  • 2 mandarins, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1 lemon, segmented (no skin)
  • Fronds reserved from fennel bulb
Ingredients from Dirty Clean Food

Shop the Recipe


  1. Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil and boil potatoes until very soft, at least 25 minutes. Drain right before they begin to fall apart. Set aside. 

  2. Preheat the oven to 220 degrees. Line a baking sheet or roasting tray with baking paper and toss the potatoes in olive oil, minced garlic and a generous amount of salt and pepper. Use the bottom of a wide glass or cup and press down, "smashing" the potato. 

  3. Place the potatoes on the top rack of your oven, and cook for 60-90 mins. Check regularly- depending on the size of the potatoes they will roast for longer.

  4. Using a fork, check once the potatoes are close to done, prepare your fish. In a smaller, lined roasting tray: rub olive oil, salt, and mandarin and lemon rind over the fish fillets and place into the oven on the bottom rack. Check fish at 7 minutes, leave on for longer if required.

  5. Prepare your sauce: juice the mandarins and lemons. On a pan with high heat, dry toast the fennel seeds for 30 seconds being careful not to burn. Add a dash of olive oil and let the fennel seeds infuse this oil. Add the citrus juices and stir. Bring to the boil and then add diced butter one piece at a time, whisking the sauce.

  6. Lower the pan heat and add mandarin and lemon pieces, fennel fronds and simmer to warm through.

  7. Toss shaved fennel in a bowl with olive oil and lemon juice. 

  8. To plate: scatted fennel over the snapper and spoon sauce over the fish. Plate potatoes to the side and top with chives.

Mandarin Fennel Baked Fish Recipe
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