Escabeche recipe

This is a claimed Spanish dish with variations of it popular along the Mediterranean coast, Portugal, North Africa, South America and the Philippines. It contains plenty of protein and healthy fats.

Photo: Fish, prawns and vegies served on a round white plate.

Escabeche was intended to preserve fish.

Originally this cooking technique was designed to preserve cooked fish and as such this dish can last in the fridge for up to three days… that’s if you don’t eat it all first, as its delicious!


  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 2 tsp salt flakes
  • ½ tsp chilli powder
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 Small Red Snapper fillets, skin on and boned.
  • 300 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 – 8 cloves garlic finely chopped (amount to taste)
  • ½ cup (125ml) red wine vinegar
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 small red chilli, thinly sliced (more to taste as desired)


  1. Combine the flour, chilli powder, and salt.
  2. Check the fish for any remaining bones and scales then remove, then dust the fish with the flour mixture shaking off any excess.
  3. Heat a frying pan and add 100ml of the olive oil into it. When hot fry the fish in small batches for 2-3minutes until nice and golden and cooked through.
  4. Place the cooked fish into a small non-reactive dish in one layer.
  5. Combine the garlic, vinegar, bay leaves, thyme, sliced chilli, ground black pepper and the remaining oil into saucepan. Carefully over medium heat the mixture until almost boiling.
  6. Remove the hot marinade from the heat and pour over the fish to cover it.
  7. Cover the dish with foil and leave to marinate for 1 hour at room temperature.
  8. Remove the fish from the marinate and place onto serving plates.
  9. Serve with a quinoa salad and low GI bread.