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Pan Seared Halibut in Carrot Ginger Broth

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Pan Seared Halibut in Carrot Ginger Broth is a summer meal must! It’s light but still satisfying and it’s loaded with healthy antioxidants and vitamins. This recipe is inspired by one of my favorite cookbooks called “The Herbal Kitchen” by Jerry Traunfeld. I have changed a bit of it – it’s not quite so cilantro heavy, and I like to reduce the carrot broth down more so it has more substance. When I make this for clients I also add some Glace de Viande (which is stock, usually chicken, reduced by cooking until it’s ~1/16 of the original volume (1 Gallon yields 1 Cup)) it adds a luscious and velvety mouthfeel to this dish.

Here, I’ve simplified it for cooking at home by increasing the amount of carrot juice, and instead having you reduce that further down. Alternatively, you could do 2 cups of carrot juice and 1 cup of chicken stock if you prefer a more neutral broth with some more protein.

Make sure your Fish is fresh

Sometimes I hear halibut its accompanied by an array of other items. I think that its okay to have a simple, but flavorful meal and let the natural ingredients shine. As a result, make sure you ask your fish monger when the best day to purchase fish is. You want the freshest halibut you can get, because there’s very little for it to hide behind.

This meal is quite simple to prepare and the broth is so flavorful you could even eat is as a soup all on it’s own.

The Key is the Broth

The key is the reduction for the body of the broth. If you want more of a thicker sauce, reduce more. If you want thinner and more “soup” like – reduce less.

When reducing, this will bubble up substantially, so make sure that your heat isn’t too high, otherwise it will bubble over on you while your back is turned. Your typical sauce pot is just fine, but in the event that you need to reduce the sauce quickly simply use a wider pan. More surface area means the liquid is spread out over the heat source (from below) more, as well as more exposure for the surface (more steam for evaporation).

Pan Searing Like the Restaurants

I’ll never forget working the line on a sauté (also known at that specific restaurant as the fish station) station. That was where I learned to pan sear fish well. It was so daunting at first! I really had to learn how to gauge temperatures and how different fish cook differently. It was definitely a “throw her in with the sharks and see if she swims” type of thing.

When pan searing, it’s important that your pan is hot prior to setting the fish in. It’s also important that you don’t over oil the pan. Using too much oil will cause splattering and extra smoke. Additionally, keep your heat on medium. You don’t need to cook this fish in 4 minutes, nor should you. The higher the heat, the more smoke you’ll have and the more likely you are to risk burning your fish while setting off your fire alarm.

When we cook in restaurants, typically we just cook the fish on one side. We set it in the hot pan, cook it on the burner for a few minutes, and then take the whole pan and put it in the oven for a few more minutes. The result is a gorgeous golden and crispy crust. If you don’t want to deal with the oven, turn your heat to medium low after the first couple minutes. It will take longer to cook, but you don’t risk burning your fish. When it’s 2/3-3/4 of the way cooked, simply flip your fish over and cook for just another minute if needed on the second side.

The Recipe

If you make this recipe, I’d love it if you would leave a comment or give this recipe a rating! I try to respond to each and every comment. Lastly, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Seeing your photos is what makes this all worth it.


Pan Seared Halibut in Carrot Ginger Broth

Halibut in Ginger Carrot Broth

This broth is great all year round, comforting in winter and refreshing and light in summer! I love the wilted spinach too, adding a savory and bitter touch against the sweet carrot. Inspired by “The Herbal Kitchen” by Jerry Traunfeld.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 2 1x
  • Cuisine: American


Units Scale
  • 1/23/4# of Halibut (or 2 Portions)
  • 3 cups Carrot Juice
  • 1/2 cup White Wine
  • Juice of 2 Limes
  • 1 Shallot, minced
  • 1” of fresh Ginger, grated (~1 Tablespoon)
  • 68 ounces spinach
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Cilantro to garnish


  1. Season your portioned fish with a bit of neutral oil, salt and pepper.
  2. Combine the carrot juice with wine, lime juice, shallots, ginger and pinch of salt.
  3. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, whisking every now and then to prevent from bubbling over.
  4. Meanwhile, in a separate sauté pan, place a drop of neutral oil in and toss in spinach and garlic clove. Saute until cooked and remove from pan. Set on paper towel to drain any extra moisture.
  5. In same sauté pan, reheat until very hot. Add fish filets and let sit, without moving until a crust forms and they lightly release. ~4-5 minutes.
  6. Using a fish spatula, flip the fish and continue cooking on medium low heat until just barely opaque in the center. About 4-5 minutes depending on your fillet thickness.
  7. Portion a bit of spinach in the bottom of each bowl.
  8. Divide soup equally, pouring a bit into each bowl over the spinach.
  9. Top with the seared halibut. Garnish with cilantro if desired.

Keywords: Fish, Dinner, Dinner Recipes, Easy Recipes, Seafood

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Hi! I'm Sydney,

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I left a marketing career in Hollywood to go to the Culinary Institute of America. After a few years of working in restaurants, I am now a private chef and sommelier in the 30a area.



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