the appetizer:

Off The Menu, Staff Meals from America's Top Restaurants by Marissa Guggiana includes recipes like Wild-Boar Ragu; Herb Biscuits with Cheese; Ricotta Pancakes with Roasted Applesauce; and Roasted Whole Croaker and Cabbage Slaw.


Roasted Whole Croaker and Cabbage Slaw


Roasted Whole Croaker
and Cabbage Slaw

Serves 4


This is an easy summer preparation (or any season when you're keen to grill or use that wood-burning oven, if you're lucky enough to have one). Cooking fish whole makes it much easier to achieve a crispy skin and moist flesh. The classic slaw builds a crescendo of summer flavors.

  • Two 1-1/2 pound croakers* or any fresh, firm-fleshed white fish, scored
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 1 cup fresh herbs: chervil, tarragon, and/or parsley
  • Sea salt, enough to season the cavity and exterior

Cabbage Slaw

  • 1 medium (1-1/2 to 2-pound) head cabbage, shredded
  • 2 large carrots, shredded
  • 1 handful chopped mixed fresh herbs: chervil, tarragon, and/or parsley
  • 1-1/2 cups mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat a wood-burning oven to 900 degrees F or set a grill to high heat.

Combine all cabbage slaw ingredients in a large bowl until generously coated and thoroughly mixed. Set aside.

Dress each fish by salting the interior cavity, then stuffing it with lemon slices and herbs. Salt the outside of the fish and place the fish in an oiled pan or on the grill. Roast for 4 minutes per side. Fish should be firm and should flake easily. Serve with the slaw on the side.


*Atlantic croakers, also known as hardheads, yield delicate, lean white meat with a sweet flavor that ranges from mild to moderately pronounced. The croakers Woodberry Kitchen used were one of the many local fish they enjoy cooking with from the Chesapeake Bay.

  • from:
    Off The Menu
    Staff Meals from America's Top Restaurants
  • by Marissa Guggiana
  • Welcome Books 2011
  • Paperback, 288 pages, $40.00
  • ISBN-10: 1599621029
  • ISBN-13: 978-159962-102-9
  • Recipe reprinted by permission.

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This page created January 2012

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