Why Is Chilean Sea Bass So Famous?

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Have you ever heard of Patagonian or Antarctic toothfish?

Both of these are names for the popular Chilean sea bass that is available at select seafood restaurants.

Many people overlook this deep water fish when it is on a menu because they aren’t sure what it is.

Continue reading to learn more about the best Chilean sea bass recipes and its interesting history.

What Is Chilean Sea Bass

Chilean sea bass is a high-quality white fish that comes from the cold waters of southern Chile.

This area is known to have excellent fish and traditional dishes that people can’t get enough of and Chilean sea bass is one of them.

This high- end fish is quite popular and can only be found in the nicest restaurants.

Unfortunately, it is highly unlikely that you would have the chance to get this at chain seafood restaurants because it is a top dollar item.

Below is further information on this fish and how it became so popular.

All in the Name

As stated above, Chilean sea bass has not always had this name, it used to be called Patagonian Toothfish and Antarctic Toothfish.

Many people had no desire to eat this fish because the name Antarctic Toothfish sounded so unappetizing.

It wasn’t until 1977 when a fish wholesaler by the name of Lee Lantz changed the name.

But it wasn’t until 1994 that the United States Food and Drug Administration officially accepted the name Chilean sea bass as an acceptable alternative for this delectable cod icefish.

Once the name was changed, it became more popular and as more people wanted to try it, the Patagonian Toothfish found its way on to dinner menus.

Top Contender of the Popularity Contest

Chilean sea bass has an interesting history. Before they changed the name, no one was fishing for Patagonian Toothfish.

With the more appealing name change and an increase in marketing, this fish became more popular and gained interest from people who once put their nose up to this fish.

Around this same time, many of the popular options were being overfished, so it gave the perfect chance for Chilean sea bass to thrive. And it hasn’t looked back.

Characteristics of Chilean Sea bass

Chilean sea bass is a white and flaky fish that tastes similar to cod. When it is properly cooked, it should have a smooth and buttery feel and taste.

It can be cooked in almost any way imaginable and the spice options for it are endless.

Because this type of fish pairs so well with spices, it is easy to integrate into your diet and favorite recipes.

Since it is a fish, it is important to be aware of mercury levels and portions suggested so that you are not harmed from eating to much of it.

Found in the deep waters off the southern ocean near and around Antarctic, these white fish are thought to live up to 50 years and can way over 200 pounds.

Some of the largest Chilean sea basses can reach a length of 7.5ft!

Health Benefits of Chilean Sea Bass

In addition to tasting so good, Chilean Seabass offers some great health benefits too!

  • High amounts of Vitamin D – Having enough vitamin D is important for a number of reasons, such as maintaining healthy bones and teeth.
  • Rich source of Protein – Your body needs a sufficient amount of protein to build and repair tissues. Protein is also needed to make hormones, enzymes, and other body chemicals. Protein is essential as a building block for your bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.
  • Plenty of Omega-3 Fatty Acid – having enough Omega-3 Fatty acid in your diet is essential in preventing and managing heart disease. It can help reduce the likelihood of heart attack and stroke.

How to Cook Chilean Sea Bass

Now that we’ve dug into the history and the health benefits of Chilean Sea bass, it’s time to get to cooking.

Chilean Sea Bass can be prepared in many ways; you choose the cooking method.

There is no best way to cook Chilean Sea Bass. Here are three different Chilean Sea Bass recipes; grilled, pan-seared and baked.

Grilled Chilean Sea Bass with Aji Pebre Recipe

Here’s a delicious recipe of Chile’s two most famous foods, Chilean Sea Bass and aji pebre chileno.

Ingredients Needed;

  • 2 lbs Sea Bass
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Lemon Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 3 TBSP Butter
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, chopped
  • 1 TBSP Flat Leaf Parsley

Grilled Chilean Sea Bass Recipe Steps;

  1. In a small bowl, stir together the garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, lemon pepper, and sea salt.
  2. Sprinkle seasonings onto the fresh fish.
  3. Preheat grill to high heat and lightly oil grill grate
  4. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter with the chopped garlic and parsley. When butter has melted, remove from heat, and set aside.
  5. Grill fish for 6 minutes, then turn and drizzle with butter sauce. Continue cooking for 6 minutes, or until easily flaked with a fork.
  6. Serve drizzled with authentic Chilean pebre.

Pan Seared Chilean Sea Bass Recipe

Ingredients Needed;

  • 1 lb Chilean Sea Bass
  • 4 TBSP Butter
  • 2 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 Cloves of Garlic, Minced
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste
  • Lemon Wedges

Pan Seared Chilean Sea Bass Recipe Steps;

  1. Heat small sauce to a pan over medium heat, add butter and garlic and let simmer
  2. Pat down with paper towel to dry to room temperature, season both sides with salt & pepper
  3. Add olive oil to a sauté pan and heat over medium heat
  4. Add fish to the non-stick pan and cook for 5 minutes on each side
  5. Pour butter over fish and serve over rice or mashed potatoes with lemon slices.

Easy Baked Chilean Sea Bass Recipe

Ingredients Needed;

  • 1 lb Chilean Sea Bass
  • 1 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 4 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste
  • 1/3 Cup White Wine
  • 2 TBSP Butter
  • 1 TBSP Fresh Parsley
  • Lemon Wedges

Baked Chilean Sea Bass Recipe Steps;

  1. Preheat oven to 450°
  2. Mix garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper
  3. Pat down fish with paper towel to dry fish and place in a shallow baking dish
  4. Pour oil mixture over fish, make sure to cover entire filet
  5. Add wine and butter to the dish
  6. Bake fish, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
  7. Remove fish from the oven and sprinkle with parsley.
  8. Place fish back in the oven and continue baking for 5 more minutes.
  9. Remove fish from the oven.
  10. Place fish on plates and drizzle pan juices over each piece. Serve with lemon wedges.

What to Serve with Chilean Sea Bass

Chilean Sea Bass has somewhat of a dull appearance. To liven things up you can select some side dishes with vibrant colors and delicious flavors.

Tasty side dishes such as Summer Couscous Salad, Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Jalapeño, Garlic, and Scallions or a fresh Mango Salsa will add a splash to your Chilean Sea Bass dish.

Other great sides include Potato leek puree, oven baked sweet potato fries, lemon and garlic rice and a medley of grilled vegetables.

You can also incorporate a variety of sauces such as lemon garlic, butter, hollandaise, miso and soy sauce to name a few.

How to Store Chilean Sea Bass

You can keep cooked Chilean Sea Bass in the refrigerator for two days. But to do so you will want to store leftovers in an airtight container.

You should not reheat up the fish. Better to just serve it cold.

Taking the Chilean Sea Bass Dive

Chilean sea bass is an excellent fish to eat if you are looking for something smooth, buttery, and worth your money.

Although it may not be the cheapest fish on the market, taking the dive and trying this fish won’t leave you disappointed.

Check out our blog to continue learning about other popular Chilean dishes.

If you’ve worked up an appetite for some delicious imported latin foods, you can shop for Chilean foods & drinks or pretty much any hard to find latin foods at our online store.

Our blog is all about sharing our love of Latin American foods & drinks. We will bring you articles and recipes of the very best Latin American & Spanish cuisine. Amigofoods was founded in 2003 and is the largest online grocery store offering a wide variety of hard to find freshly imported foods & drinks from all over Latin America and Spain.

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