Fennel Crusted Hawaiian Kanpachi Loin

         WITH CHEF PALEY                SERVES 4                  TIME: 25 MINUTES

Healthy Dinner Recipe!






Part: Hawaiian Kanpachi Loin

The versatility of Hawaiian Kanpachi is apparent in this dish as it adopts well to the Mediterranean style preparation.

This can be a dish to impress with minimal skill or effort but will allow you to show off your technical prowess in the kitchen without venturing too far out of your comfort zone.

Once you make the fennel puree and spread it on the fish, the rest is easy. A well-used, or “broken in” nonstick pan and a calibrated oven is all you need to show-off your skills.

If you decide to individually plate your Hawaiian Kanpachi, it becomes an instant main course to a special meal. If you platter it whole, it will be right at home alongside grilled vegetables. Enjoy it during the holidays with a glass of rose and they will praise your mastery, I promise.


1 small, sweet onion - peeled and coarsely diced

1 fennel bulb - coarsely diced

½ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil plus more for finishing

4 cloves garlic - sliced thin

4 anchovy filets

4 sprigs thyme - picked and chopped

Zest of ½ lemon

Juice of ½ lemon

Kosher sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon dry oregano

1 pound center cut Kanpachi loin filet

1/4 cup pitted Niçoise or Kalamata Olives

1/3 cup cherry tomatoes - cut in half

Quick preserved lemon peel (Click for recipe)

Several leaves of basil - hand torn for garnish

2 scallions - sliced thin



To make the fennel crust, place the sliced onion and fennel into a medium size sauté pan. Pour in a ¼ cup olive oil and over medium low heat cook stirring frequently until tender with no coloration, about 15 minutes. Add garlic, anchovies, thyme, zest, and juice of lemon. Generously season with salt and pepper and cook stirring for another 5 minutes. Transfer the cooked ingredients into a food processor and blitz the mixture is finely pureed.

pexels-alesia-kozik-6128866   Anchovy

Scrape the mixture out into a bowl to cool completely before spreading on top of the fish. If not using right away, transfer into or a container with lid and refrigerate. The fennel mixture will last refrigerated for up to 3 days.

For baking your fish: Preheat the oven to 400 F. Slice the fillet into 4 equal portions or keep it whole for family-style presentation. Season the fish with salt and pepper on both sides. When cooking the loin whole, place the loin on a cutting board and spoon the fennel mixture in the center of the filet. Using a small off set spatula or butter knife, spread the mixture evenly across the top, edge to edge. If working with individual servings, split the mixture into 4 equal portions and repeat the process 4 times.

Place an oven proof nonstick skillet on the stove, add the remaining olive oil, turn the heat on high and heat up until the oil shimmers, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the Hawaiian Kanpachi, crust side up into the pan and cook undisturbed until the fish browns lightly around the edges. Carefully transfer the pan into the oven and bake your fish until it is fully cooked, about 10 minutes. Using oven proof mitts, take the pan out and place olives and tomatoes all around the fish. Place the pan back into the oven and cook until tomatoes begin to release juices, about 5 more minutes.

Transfer the cooked kanpachi onto the plates or platter if cooked whole, spoon the tomato and olive mixture throughout, garnish with preserved lemon, basil and chopped green onion, drizzle with more olive oil and serve immediately.

Leave a comment if you like this recipe!



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