Persian Tamarind-Stuffed Fish

  • Serves

    serves 4

  • Cook

    1 hour


By Louisa Shafia

Published on March 16, 2016

A luxurious whole fish preparation flavored with tangy tamarind and fragrant barberries, perfect for Nowruz, the Persian new year. Find barberries in well-stocked Middle Eastern groceries or online.


  • 6 tbsp. olive oil, plus more for greasing
  • 12 cup barberries
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 14 cup tamarind paste
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 13 cup minced cilantro
  • 13 cup minced parsley
  • 13 cup minced tarragon
  • Lime wedges, for serving
  • 4 trout, cleaned and butterflied
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Step 1

Heat oven to 375°. Grease two baking sheets and set aside.

Step 2

Soak barberries in warm water for 30 minutes and drain.

Step 3

In a large skillet over medium-high, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil. Add the onions and cook until brown, about 10 minutes. Lower the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes more, until dark brown and caramelized. Add the barberries, almonds, tamarind, and garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro, parsley, and tarragon.

Step 4

Season fish with salt and pepper. Stuff each fish with about 1⁄2 cup stuffing and brush with remaining olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes. Change oven setting to broil and cook an additional 3 to 4 minutes, until the fish's skin is golden.

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