Escoveitched Halibut

Apr 8, 2012 by

In continuing with the theme of Easter, I wanted to try a fish recipe that reminds me of  home but at the same time utilizing a fish that is familiar to most in the region where I live. Halibut is a really fresh, firm white fish that is rich in lean protein, Omega 3 Fatty Acids, B Vitamins and  Magnesium. Having said all that, I’m going to fry it! I don’t fry very often so I don’t feel bad at all. Moderation is key. In Jamaica, fried fish is one of my most favourite things to eat. This particular recipe includes a fried fish, covered with a vegetable/vinegar topping that rests over the fish for a few hours before the fish is served. I used Scotch Bonnet Pepper for the first time. I guess I’m getting really brave because I don’t tolerate “heat” very well!

I’m so glad I had my Mom to consult with on this recipe. I got the basic idea of the ingredients and then I put my little twist on it. Nothing major – it’s still Escoveitch :-) A friend of mine shared a very good tip with me about frying the fish- ensure the oil is very hot, and use very little flour on the fish. My fish was perfectly fried.

Escoveitched Halibut



Escoveitch or Escabeche is derived from Mediterranean origins and refers to fish (or some other white meat) being marinated in an acidic sauce or liquid prior to serving. In Jamaica, the vegetables are cooked down in a vinegar and water mixture and then poured over the fish, and allowed to marinate overnight or for a few hours. I could not wait for it to marinate so I ate my serving fresh from the pot and put the rest in the fridge for a more concentrated flavour.


Escoveitched Halibut
Recipe Type: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch
Author: Lyn
Prep time: 25 mins
Cook time: 40 mins
Total time: 1 hour 5 mins
Serves: 4
A Jamaican dish that can be served for breakfast, lunch or dinner
  • 4 Halibut Fillets
  • 1/4 Cup Flour seasoned with salt and pepper
  • Oil for frying the fish {about 1/4-inch deep}
  • 1 Lime to wash the fish
  • 4 Tbsp White Vinegar
  • 4 Tbsp Water
  • 4 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Tsp Sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 Carrot, julienned
  • 1 Sweet Green Pepper, julienned
  • 1/2 Zucchini, julienned
  • 1 Small Onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 Scotch bonnet pepper, thinly sliced
  • 6-8 Pimento Berries
  1. Wash the fish with water and juice from the lime
  2. Pat dry with a paper towel. Dust with seasoned flour. Fry and set aside
  3. In a warm skillet, add oil
  4. Add Onion, Carrot, Sweet Pepper, Scotch Bonnet Pepper, Pimento.
  5. Stir to soften vegetables
  6. Add vinegar, salt and sugar
  7. Add zucchini and a little water
  8. Allow to cook for about 15 minutes until the vegetables are softened
  9. Pour over fried fish
  10. Allow to marinade for a few hours
  11. Serve at room temperature

Alternative way to cook Escoveitch: Bring a cup of water and a cup of vinegar to a boil. Add vegetables, pepper, salt, sugar and pimento and cook until softened. Pour over fried fish and allow to marinade overnight or a few hours
The Scotch Bonnet pepper can be cut up or placed in whole then removed before pouring other the fish


This was the hardest part of the entire recipe. Slicing up all these veggies!!!


Vegetables for the Escoveitch


Washing fish in lime or lemon is very important. So I’ve been told. It helps to reduce the fishy smell, but I prefer fish that have a mild smell so I don’t usually wash with lime. I did for Escoveitch.


Lime and Halibut


Remember! Not too much flour…


Halibut in Seasoned Flour


I’m terrified of frying. Hot oil is no joke!


Halibut in oil



One side finished, no injuries so far :-)


Halibut Golden Brown


Seriously, I could really get into frying stuff.


Fried Halibut


The colours were so vibrant and the smell was fantastic! You must believe!


Sweet Peppers, Carrot, Onion, Zucchini, Pimento, Scotch Bonnet Pepper


This dish is good for breakfast or dinner. It can be served with Fried Dumplings, Fried Breadfruit, or Fried Bammy!


Fried Halibut with Escoveitch Sauce


If you do make this dish, don’t be afraid to put more vinegar and water. This is my personal version that suits my palate and I get more of the vegetable flavour.  To get the real kick ~ use more vinegar and the whole scotch bonnet pepper. Leave it overnight.


I have a few more recipes like this to share then I have to make a date with my treadmill.



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  1. Oh my this looks good! I love halibut too. Must try soon…

  2. I seriously think you are outdoing yourself with every post Lyn. The pictures are sooo great, vibrant, eye catching and mouth drooling! I enjoyed this post as I do every other that you do! I’m a lover of escoveitch fish myself, with the pepper of course! Another great post!!

    • *Big Grin* Thank you….
      I’ve always been afraid of the pepper! But I’m glad I know how to make it now so I have more control of the quantity of pepper. Glad you enjoyed the post Bestie!

  3. this sounds DELICIOUS! and it looks so beautiful and vibrant!

  4. Wow, this looks incredibly flavorful, and I just love that it’s chockfull of veggies. I’ve kind of been noticing that I’m not incorporating enough veggies in my diet so this dish is just perfect for me! And I must say, you have some beautiful, gorgeous looking photos here.


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