White Fish in Saffron Sauce for a colorful dish

Did you know that to make a kilo of saffron you will need 150.000 stigmas of flowers? Crocus Sativus is the flower which is being picked in the autumn entirely by hand and it makes one of the most expensive spices in the world.

I normally use saffron in risotto or pasta. It gives lot of colour to the dish and I love its delicate taste. When you add saffron you don’t need much else and you can cut down the salt too.

This time I have tried using it in fish. I normally never use sauces on fish because I like the taste of the sea and I have always felt it would spoil it. In cooking there is always something new to learn and I have changed my mind on this occasion. This sauce was a great success and went down well with the children too; it is delicate, of great effect, not too rich and it actually enhances the flavour of the fish.

Also, another very important detail: it is ready in minutes!

  • Prep Time : 25 minutes
  • Cook Time : 20 minutes


  • white fish fillets – 800 g
  • white wine
  • olive oil – 2 tbsp
  • garlic cloves – 2
  • saffron – a few stems
  • chopped parsley – 1 tbsp
  • hot water – 250 ml
  • vegetable stock cube – 1
  • flour – 2 tbsp
  • butter – 90 g
  • paprika


In a pan stir fry the olive oil with the garlic then add the fish fillets and cook them on a moderate heat. Pour a dash of wine and keep cooking until the fish is soft.

Make the stock by dissolving the stock cube in the hot water, then add the saffron and mix it all up well.

Make the sauce by melting the butter over a source of heat in a pan, add the flour, paprika and slowly add the broth. Add the juice the fish has released during cooking and cook for 10 minutes whilst keep stirring all the time until the sauce has thickened up.

Now put the fish fillets on a plate and pour the sauce over it. Sprinkle with the parsley.

Serve will plenty of colourful vegetables!


21 thoughts on “White Fish in Saffron Sauce for a colorful dish

  1. Eh si, lo zafferano richiede ore di lavoro ed enormi quantità di fiori. Tra l’altro i fiori devono essere raccolti al mattino.
    Il tuo pesce è delizioso ed è presentato benissimo.
    Un bacione


  2. What a gorgeous dish! I love how you arranged all the vegetables. I have never cooked with saffron before because they are so expensive locally. Now I know its because 1kg takes 150,000 flowers to make… wow…


  3. Alida you haven’t activated your blog feed for this new place and your posts won’t be updated on those blogs who put your blog on the blogroll :).
    Astonishing dish, I like the combination haddock, olives and red peppers…what a harmonious symphony of flavors. Saffron sounds exotic.never tried…haven’t seen here.


  4. I love using saffron with risotto – especially in the fall with butternut squash. The saffron is so warm and comforting. I’ve never had it with fish before (I don’t think I have anyway), but this sounds delicious and a beautiful golden color. Thanks so much for sharing, Alida!


  5. I love the photo!!! Wonderful. And I also love saffron!!! I agree with you about tasting the sea with fish. I love the simple yet delicious flavor. 🙂


  6. I love fish with saffron, but it is so expensive! So most of the time I just love the fish… 🙂 You made a beautiful dish, Alida!


  7. wooow, that fish looks delicious! I love using saffron with everything. Try it with custard, it’s absolutely sublime. Hughs from rainy Spain 🙂


  8. I made this lovely dish last night and the sauce was delicate and creamy and did not mask the flavour of the fish (I used cod steaks), and substituted the flour with tapioca flour as I am trying to follow a Paleo diet. I use a lot of saffron and always ask my sister-in-law to get me as much as she can when she and my brother spend summer in Spain.
    I hope you are all well? Are you off to Italy for the summer? I’m so missing the hot sun and beautiful beaches from our March visit to Costa Rica.
    I’m making your oven baked meatballs tonight, so will let you know how I get on.
    Sue xxx


    1. I buy saffron in Italy too as it is cheaper and so light for my luggage. I love adding it to risotto and sometimes to pasta too. I will look for tapioca flour as it is new to me. I am in Italy for the rest of the summer, I need to top up on vitamin D! Hope all is well with you both xx


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s