Home Grown: How to make salt-crusted sea bass 

Chef Sergio in his Soho House chef's uniform stood outdoors smiling to camera with his arms crossed

Soho Beach House Miami’s executive chef, Sergio Sigala, shares his recipe for the Sicilian classic

Thursday 27 January 2022   Video by AJ Woomer


A recipe of Mediterranean flavours that’s sure to impress at your next dinner party, chef Sergio Sigala’s Branzino al Sale (salt-crusted sea bass) is relatively simple in method. Made up of egg whites, herbs, seasonings, and of course, salt, the crust helps retain the fish’s moisture. It’s the ideal centrepiece for any feast.



Sea bass
1.5 kg sea bass, cleaned, descaled and rinsed
1 ½ kg coarse sea salt
5 sage leaves
2 thyme sprigs
2 rosemary sprigs
1 bunch of parsley
2 garlic cloves, crushed
4 egg whites
1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp mustard seeds
1 tbsp black peppercorns
1 tbsp pink peppercorns
1 lemon
100 ml extra virgin olive oil

Tomato salsa
200g baby heirloom tomatoes, cut in half
10 Taggiasca olives
20 capers
6 basil leaves, shredded by hand
100 ml extra virgin olive oil
1 lemon
Sea salt and pepper



1. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F). Coarsely chop all the herbs together and mix with the salt and the seeds.
2. Beat the egg whites until you get stiff peaks with an electric whisk.
3. Gently fold the egg whites into the salt with a spatula.
4. Stuff the sea bass with crushed garlic, a slice of lemon, and some rosemary and thyme.
5. Place some parchment paper on a baking sheet and place half of the salt mixture for the fish to sit on.
6. Put the fish on the salt mixture and cover it completely, including the sides, to totally seal in the fish. Then, bake for 45 minutes (15 minutes per lb).
7. Remove from the oven and let it rest at room temperature for 10 minutes. Break away the salt crust to expose the flesh. Serve with lemon juice and olive oil.
8. For the salsa, mix all the ingredients together, adding salt, pepper, and the juice of one lemon. 


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