Roasted Halibut with Tahini Sauce

4 people
Prep Time:
00h 00
Cook Time:
00h 40

Go sesame or go home! Zaatar and tahini join forces for Middle Eastern flavors like sesame and sumac.

Credit: This inspiring recipe is brought to you by Julia Lee via My Recipes.

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Ingredients and Method


  • 2 lemons
  • 2 teaspoons zaatar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon red chile flakes
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 4 halibut fillets, 1 inch thick
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed


  1. Set rack in top third of oven and preheat to 450°. Zest half of 1 lemon into a small bowl. Add zaatar, cumin, chile flakes, 1 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper, and the oil; mix. Coat one side of fillets with paste.
  2. Arrange halibut, paste side up, on a baking sheet and set on upper rack. Roast until fish is just cooked through, 6 to 10 minutes.
  3. Put tahini, garlic, 2 tbsp. water, juice of 1/2 lemon, and remaining 1 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper in a blender and whirl until smooth and pourable. Add more lemon juice to taste, and more water if you'd prefer a thinner sauce. Cut remaining lemon into wedges.
  4. Serve fish with tahini sauce and lemon wedges.
  5. Find zaatar, a Middle Eastern spice blend of sesame seeds, sumac, thyme, and oregano, in your grocery store's spice aisle.
  6. Wine pairing: A silky red like Crossbarn by Paul Hobbs 2012 Pinot Noir (Anderson Valley; $35); aromatic spices echo zaatar. --Sara Schneider