Poaching fish in olive oil is one of those well-kept restaurant secrets that is incredibly easy to recreate on our stovetop at home. All it takes is a nice, flaky fish filet, some fresh herbs of your choice, and an abundance of extra virgin olive oil.
While roasting, grilling, or pan-searing fish that can be eaten less than fully cooked, like tuna or salmon is often the ideal method, some fish like halibut, sea bass, or Mahi Mahi should be cooked completely. By poaching them gently in olive oil you can create a delicate, silken texture that’s hard to recreate in any other way.
When olive oil-poaching fish, I love to use a delicate and fruity extra virgin olive oil. While more delicate oils are sometimes not the best choice for searing or frying, they can shine in a low-temp cooking method like poaching. Because you’ll be keeping the temperature of the oil well under the smoke point, the more delicate flavors won’t be lost through the cooking process.