Oven-baked Whole Maya-Maya

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Whip up this festive fish fare and your guests will be blown away!

Preparation time: 1 hour
Baking time: 40 minutes
Serves 4

Ingredients
1.3 kilograms maya-maya fish, whole and scaled
450 grams potatoes, peeled
200 grams cherry tomatoes, ripened
50 mL white wine
120 grams carrots
120 grams fennel
120 grams zucchini
120 grams red onion
2 pieces egg white
50 mL olive oil
salt, to taste

Procedure
FOR THE STUFFING
1. Cut the carrots, onion, fennel, and zucchini into small cubes.
2. Heat a bit of oil in a pot then add the onion. Cook for 10 minutes, then add the carrots. Cook for 5 minutes, then add the rest of the veggies. Cook for a few minutes until al dente.
3. Once cooled, add the beaten egg whites and set aside.

FOR THE FISH
1. If you’re preparing the fish yourself, fillet it from the back down, but don’t cut through the stomach cavity. when completed on both sides, take a pair of scissors and snip the bone behind the bead and the tail, so you can remove all the bones.
2. Take out all the guts, and remove the bloodline, fins, and gills. Give the fish a really good wash. Pat dry with a paper towel, and set aside.
3. Preheat oven to 180°C. Cut the potatoes into cubes, toss with salt and oil, and bake for around 15 minutes.
4. Season the fish with salt and fill it with the vegetable stuffing, truss very carefully with the end of a food needle and twine. Place the fish on top of the potatoes, add some wine, and bake for 20 minutes.
5. Finally, add the tomatoes and cook for another 10 minutes.

TO ASSEMBLE
1. Discard the twine from the fish, place the potatoes in a large, nice plate, then place the fish on the side.
2. Add the juices from the baking tray and sprinkle with some chopped parsley.

This recipe was originally published in the December 2016 – January 2017 issue of Breakfast Magazine.