Mullet with tomatoes and roasted fennel
An easy-to-prepare Mediterranean fish dish. The source of inspiration is Turkish cuisine − they use eggplant, but I chose fennel.
2 gray mullets (about 1 kg. each), heads and fins cut off and sliced in half crosswise
juice of 2 lemons
3 fennel heads, cut into quarters
2 hot green peppers, sliced
10 large ripe tomatoes, cut into eighths
14 whole peeled garlic cloves
Place the pieces of fish in a bowl. Season with salt and lemon juice and mix well by hand. Set aside.
Heat olive oil in a wide, deep skillet, add the fennel quarters and saute until they soften and become brown at the edges. Add hot pepper and continue to saute for about half a minute. When you smell a strong fragrance of pepper, add the tomatoes. Shake the skillet to combine all ingredients and add a quarter cup of water. Cover and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, until the sauce thickens. Add salt to taste and cook for another 2 or 3 minutes.
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Transfer sauce to a Pyrex or other deep ovenproof dish. Place fish in the dish so that the upper half of the fish is visible above the sauce. Bake for 15 minutes.