Roasted Halibut Tail with Miso Chili Butter and Salsa

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halibut tail

Finding a halibut tail in the SF Bay area might be a little challenging unless you know where to look. 😉

We purchased ours from Fresh Catch, a non-subscription based Community Supported Fishery that allows you to choose from fresh fish options every week via email. Halibut (and salmon) tails might also be available by special request from other CSFs as well.

This recipe was inspired by a salmon tail dish we had at Liholiho Yacht Club in 2015. As it turns out, Liholiho Yacht Club serves halibut tail more often than salmon and it has become one of their signature dishes.

We were going to try the green bean version, a la Liholiho, with our halibut tail but alas, our bean plant in the garden only offered up 6 ready-to-pick beans.  But there was a small forest of cilantro blossoms, so we clipped a bunch for a garnish. And honestly, we had no idea how to make that red chili sauce that so brightly defines the dish above, so we defaulted to a miso chili butter and tomato salsa combo which we figured would combine to make a nice savory red sauce.

Cooking a tail of this size (about 2 1/2 lbs) is almost foolproof. There is a big meaty bone running down the middle which releases juices as it cooks keeping the meat moist at the center, and the flesh is covered with skin, which helps prevent it from drying out while roasting. Basically, we just put the tail on an oiled sheet pan and cooked it for 30 minutes at 400 degrees.

 

For a full demonstration of this recipe, watch our Instagram video here:

igtv halibut tail

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Roasted Halibut Tail with Miso Chili Butter and Salsa

Halibut tails have a lot of meat, and depending on size, usually enough to feed four people. There is a big meaty bone running down the middle which releases juices as it cooks keeping the meat moist at the center, and the flesh is covered with skin, which helps prevent it from drying out while roasting.

  • Author: Edible San Francisco
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Main course
  • Method: Roasting
  • Cuisine: California

Ingredients

Scale

For the halibut

  • 1 halibut tail 2-4 pounds
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

For the miso butter

  • 4 tablespoons soft butter
  • 1 tablespoon miso
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes

For the salsa

  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 2 small cloves garlic (minced)
  • 3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped (we remove the seeds first)
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons lime juice.

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F
  2. Oil a sheet pan with a tablespoon of olive oil and rub both sides of the tail with oil.
  3. Put the tail on the pan, white side up, and roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes.
  4. While the tail is roasting, make the miso butter and the salsa.
  5. For the miso butter, put all the ingredients in a bowl and stir together until combined.
  6. For the salsa, put all the ingredients together in a bowl and season with the salt.
  7. Insert an instant-read thermometer in through the cut end of the tail about one-half inch from the bone. When it reads an internal temperature between 130 and 135° F (55 to 57 C)  {however, the USDA recommendation is to aim for 145°F (63 C)} remove the tail from the oven and place it on a serving platter.
  8. Carefully peel away the top layer of white skin. It should come off very easily. No need to remove the bottom skin.
  9. Spread the miso butter all over the flesh of the halibut. It will start to melt, but that’s ok because it’s going to mingle with the juices from the tomato salsa to make a delicious sauce.
  10. Spoon the tomato salsa and all its juices over the top of the halibut.
  11. Garnish with cilantro blossoms (optional) and serve, spooning the combined juices of the butter and salsa over the top.
  12. Bon appetit!

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 4

Keywords: halibut, fish for dinner

Photos: Bruce Cole