Recipe courtesy of Johnny Hernandez

Mixiote de Pescado (Branzino Wrapped in Banana Leaves)

  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 40 min
  • Active: 20 min
  • Yield: 1 to 2 servings
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4 banana leaves, about 20 inches long

One 2-pound whole branzino, cleaned and scaled 

Salt and pepper

2 slices lemon 

2 sprigs fresh parsley 

2 sprigs fresh thyme 

1 bay leaf 

1 clove garlic, thinly sliced 

1 slice onion 

1/4 red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced

2 root beer (hoja santa) leaves 

Extra-virgin olive oil 


Special equipment:
butcher's twine
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Heat the banana leaves over an open flame until pliable. Sprinkle the inside of the fish with salt and pepper, and stuff the cavity with the lemon, parsley, thyme, bay leaf, garlic, onion and red pepper. Coat the outside of the fish with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Wrap the fish in the root beer leaves, then wrap in the banana leaves. Tie at intervals with butcher's twine to secure the leaves to the fish.
  3. Bake until the fish reaches an internal temperature of 140 degrees F, 15 to 20 minutes, flipping once halfway through cooking.

Cook’s Note

If preferred, the fish can be grilled over a bed of coals.