British Tomato Week: Black Sea Bream with Heritage Tomato Salad Recipe

In celebration of British Tomato Week this week, here is a delicious recipe for Black Sea Bream with Heritage Tomato Salad and Seared Lemon. This is a lovely summer lunch – best enjoyed in the garden. Cornish line or net caught Black Bream is a delicious Eastern Atlantic white seafish – it is sustainable and very much in season over the next couple of months (July / August).  There are many heritage tomato varieties being grown again commercially and domestically all over Britain – seeds are readily available and picking your own warm fruit straight from the plant is a very special treat – we have given a generous quantity for the salad as you will definitely be pinching from the bowl as you go!  We particularly like Pink Ice (very flavourful cherry tom), Black Krim (a big puckered tom that slices well), Baby Yellow Pear (tiny bright yellow “pears”), Orange Russian (a fruity “oxheart” tom), Green Sausage (pink and green mottled – delicious flavour).

Black Sea Bream with Heritage Tomato Salad and Seared Lemon


800g Heritage tomatoes – go for different colours and sizes – they will taste different!

Small Handful of Marjoram Leaves

5 tbsp Olive Oil

2 tbsp White wine vinegar

1 tsp Dijon mustard

Pinch Freshly ground black pepper

2 tsps Maldon salt

Pinch caster sugar

6 Black Sea Bream fillets

6 slices of unwaxed lemon


Wash your tomato selection and slice as the tomato dictates – quarter the little ones length-ways and slice the bigger ones around their girth to get the prettiest section.  Jumble them together with the Marjoram leaves – reserve a few to dress each plate.

Prepare your vinaigrette – combine the olive oil (reserve a good slug to oil your fish), the vinegar, the mustard, 1 tsp of salt, the pepper and sugar and whizz up with a fork until you have a smooth dressing (this will separate again – don’t worry).  Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary.

Slash the sea bream skin 3-4 times, brush with some of the oil, salt the skin side and cook on a hot barbecue for up to 10 minutes turning once (the fish is ready to turn when the edges are golden and the skin doesn’t tear when you try to flip the fillet).

Add the 6 slices of lemon to the barbecue – you are aiming to char mark the lemon on each side, so as soon as it begins to brown along the lines of the BBQ grill, turn it over and toast the other side – this will decorate your fish and must be pretty!

Remove the fish from the barbecue and set aside.  Whizz up your vinaigrette if it has settled into layers again and pour over the tomato jumble.  Ensure the toms are all coated and spoon into the centre of each plate, getting a mix of colours for everyone.  Lean your bream fillet, crispy skin side up against the pile of tomatoes and put your seared lemon in the centre of the fillet.  Sprinkle the remaining marjoram around the rim of each plate and serve.