Sea bass fillet and green basil pesto with Argan Oil recipe

Crafted by Chef Philip Mayo

“This dish just shouts summer! The Argan Oil gives the pesto a real diverse, nutty flavour which I love! This dish is a real crowd-pleaser that will cover all sorts of social functions.” 

Portion size
For 2 people

Preparation time 
20 minutes

Cooking time
40 minutes


  • 2x 100g sea bass fillets

For the new potatoes:

  • 200g new potatoes
  • 25g butter
  • A handful of chopped chives
  • Sea salt to season
  • Ground pepper to season

For the roasted vine tomatoes:

  • 1 ripened tomato vine
  • 50ml olive oil
  • Sea salt to season

For the pesto:

  • 50g fresh basil finely chopped
  • 10g toasted pine nuts
  • 1/2 garlic clove crushed
  • 50ml Traditional Argan Oil


  1. Start with the potatoes, place them in a pan with enough water to cover – add a pinch of salt to help the water boil. Boil for at least ten minutes.
  2. Next move onto the pesto, in a pesel and mortar, grind the garlic to a puree, add the pine nuts, then Argan Oil. Once fully mixed together, fold the finely chopped basil into the oil mix, being careful not to bruise the herb too much as this will taint the colour of it.
  3. Once the potatoes are cooked, strain them and place in the now empty pan. With a masher start to crush them, but make sure they are not totally smooth. Add the butter and stir gently until all the butter is mixed into the potatoes.
  4. Place a pan on a medium to high heat. Once slightly smoking, add the olive oil and the vine tomatoes, they will split slightly as the skin cooks – do not worry, this is meant to happen! Once they have a dark almost burnt bottom to them, remove them from the pan and carefully wipe with kitchen paper.
  5. Add a small amount of olive oil and place the sea bass skin side down in the pan. Once the flesh is 2/3 white, flip the fish over to reveal the crispy brown skin. Add a teaspoon of butter and remove from the heat to continue cooking. Meanwhile, add the chives to the crushed potatoes and mix fully.
  6. Plating up: make a nest of potatoes, lay the sea bass fillet over the potato, then the vine of tomato over the top, circle around with the pesto and a sprig of basil on top of the tomato (optional).

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