Halibut with Israeli Couscous and Cucumber

Halibut with Israeli couscous and cucumber will keep your Summer going strong and your belly full. Fresh basil and mint take it to the limit.

  • Author: David (Doggy Daddy)
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 2 1x
  • Category: dinner
  • Method: stovetop
  • Cuisine: american
  • Diet: Low Calorie


  • Halibut
  • 1 cup Israeli couscous, white or tri-color
  • 1/2 large cucumber
  • 3-4 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 3 Tbsp. shallot
  • 2 Tbsp. garlic
  • 1 cup decent Sauvignon Blanc
  • 2-3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil + drizzle
  • 3 Tbsp. grapeseed oil
  • Mint
  • Basil



  1. Cut 1/2 cucumber in half and remove the center seed part
  2. Chop each segment into squares
  3. Put into a bowl with a couple pinches of salt, cracked pepper and a couple tablespoons of red wine vinegar
  4. Set in the fridge, stirring occasionally, until ready to plate

Couscous (around 30mins)

  1. Heat 1 quart of liquid (water or stock) until boiling then reduce to simmer
  2. Heat 2-3 Tbsp in a saucier or pot over medium heat until it shimmers, but is not smoking
  3. Add shallot and cook for 3 minutes or until becoming clear
  4. Add garlic and bay leaf and cook for another 3 minutes, making sure the garlic doesn't brown
  5. Add couscous and stir everything together for 1-2 minutes
  6. Season with black pepper and salt
  7. Add wine and cook until reduced
  8. Add a ladle of the hot liquid to the couscous
  9. As the liquid is absorbed, continue to add a ladle or two at a time to the couscous, stirring occasionally, until it reaches a non-crunchy consistency (sample and taste along the way - you may need to add more liquid or seasoning)
  10. When the couscous is done, add final seasoning if needed, turn off the heat, and set aside

While Cooking the Couscous

  1. Prepare your halibut by removing the skin and cutting into 2-inch wide portions - dry with paper towels
  2. Prepare your herbs by getting an equal amount of basil and mint leaves together - tearing a few by hand especially if they're big mofo's


  1. Season both sides of the halibut with sea salt and cracked pepper
  2. Bring the grapeseed oil to a shimmer of medium-high heat in your favorite pan
  3. Add fish to pan, laying from the front of the pan to the back to avoid oil splashing on you
  4. Cook 2-3 minutes per side depending on thickness - you'll see the fish turn from translucent to opaque, but you don't want to overcook it and dry it out


  1. Just before fish is done, add a little bit of liquid along with a squeeze of half a lemon to the couscous and stir - you don't want it watery, though - it should just make it fluid
  2. Spoon the couscous on your plate
  3. Add half of the cucumber chunks on the couscous with a little bit of the liquid
  4. Place halibut on top
  5. Add mint and basil around the dish
  6. Finally, drizzle with a small amount of EVOO to complete


We use grapeseed oil for the fish because it has a high smoke point and doesn't flavor the fish. Don't use EVOO because it has a lower smoke point and will burn.

Don't move the fish while cooking or it will tear and you'll lose the wonderful sear that gets created.

Sliced and marinated grape tomatoes would be a great addition for added flavor and color - but I didn't have any on hand.

Keywords: halibut, israeli couscous, cucumber, mint, basil