Cook the Book: Roasted Halibut with Grapefruit Fennel Salsa

Cook the Book: Roasted Halibut with Grapefruit Fennel Salsa

Book Cover

Grapefruits are one of my favorite cold weather foods. Not only are they packed with flu-fighting vitamin C, their bright flavor is like a mini burst of sunshine. Often I peel and eat them unadorned, like oranges or clementines. But grapefruits are also a versatile ingredient, perfect in crisp salads, sweet desserts, and many savory main dishes.

Today's Cook the Book recipe, excerpted from Giada's Kitchen, combines the tart citrus fruit with briny Niçoise olives and crunchy fennel. The salsa is then heaped onto simply roasted halibut filets. It’s an incredibly easy dish to assemble, yet the results are impressive and memorable. Author and culinary celebrity Giada de Laurentiis says, "When I meet with fans I often hear this recipe mentioned as a favorite."

Roasted Halibut with Grapefruit Fennel Salsa


  • 2 ruby red grapefruits
  • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons pitted Niçoise olives, halved
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 (6-ounce) pieces halibut
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  1. 1.

    Preheat oven to 375°F.

  2. 2.

    With a zester or fine grater, remove 1 teaspoon of zest from one of the grapefruits. Use a large, sharp knife to trim away all the peel and pith from both grapefruits. Hold the peeled fruit over a bowl and cut in between the membranes to free the grapefruit segments; you should have about 1 cup. Squeeze the membranes over the bowl to extract the juice; you want 1/4 cup. (Reserve extra juice for another use.) Add the zest and segments to the bowl.

  3. 3.

    Halve the fennel bulb lengthwise, slice it thin, and add it to the bowl with the grapefruit segments. Add the olive oil, olives, parsley, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and the red pepper flakes. Stir to combine.

  4. 4.

    Meanwhile, place the fish on a parchment-lined roasting dish. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and the black pepper and bake for 10 to 12 minutes depending on thickness.

  5. 5.

    Gently transfer the fish to a serving plate. Top with the grapefruit and fennel salsa and serve immediately.