Pairing fish and meat for main courses has become a popular restaurant trend over the least few years, and not just in the traditional surf-and-turf sense. In cooking the two in the same pan, chefs use this technique to give fish a more robust, meaty flavor, and although it may sound strange if you’ve not tried it, the results can be spectacular.

This pan-roasted halibut, chickpeas, and chorizo is based on a Spanish dish; chorizo, the Spanish hard sausage, and chickpeas (garbanzo beans) are often paired in the cuisine of that country. They make a great accompaniment for the halibut, which is a fish that stands up well to other flavors. The next time you get your hands on some very fresh halibut, remember this dish.–Kevin Garvin

Pan-Roasted Halibut, Chickpeas and Chorizo on a blue earthenware plate on a table with a white runner with a red stripe.

Pan-Roasted Halibut, Chickpeas and Chorizo

5 / 4 votes
For this pan-roasted halibut, chickpeas, and chorizo, seared halibut is matched up with a stew of Spanish chorizo, chickpea, cabbage.
David Leite
Servings4 servings
Calories957 kcal
Prep Time40 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time1 hour 10 minutes


For the Seafood Seasoning

  • 2 tablespoons ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the Iberian Stew

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 ounces Spanish-style chorizo sausage, (preferably Goya or Quixote brand), cut on a bias into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1/2 cup peeled and finely diced carrot
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 cup shredded cabbage
  • One (19-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup homemade chicken stock or canned chicken broth
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup minced cilantro leaves, (leaves and stems)

For the halibut

  • Four (6-ounce) halibut fillets
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup julienned scallions, (green and white parts)
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves


  • To prepare the seasoning, combine the coriander, Old Bay seasoning, salt, and pepper in a bowl and set aside (if not using immediately, transfer to an airtight container and store in a cool, dry space).
  • To prepare the stew, pour 2 tablespoons of the olive oil into a saute pan and set over medium-high heat. Add the chorizo and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, until it begins to brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a mixing bowl. Using a fine-mesh strainer, strain and reserve the colored and well-flavored oil for finishing the dish.
  • Pour the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a saucepan and set over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute for about 1 minute, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until golden brown; the garlic should be caramelized but not burned. Add the onion, carrot, and oregano, and continue to cook for about 3 minutes, until the onion is translucent. Turn down the heat to low and add the cabbage. Cook for 3 minutes longer, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the chickpeas and chicken broth, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and continue to cook over low heat, uncovered, for 10 to 15 minutes, so that some of the broth evaporates and the flavors come together. Add the cooked chorizo and the cilantro and keep warm.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
  • Place the halibut fillets on a large plate and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, brushing the oil to completely cover the fish. Evenly coat each fillet with about 1 tablespoon of the reserved Seafood Seasoning. Pour the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil into an oven-proof saute pan or skillet and set over medium-high heat. Carefully place the fillets in the pan and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, letting the fillets brown and form a crust on the first side. Turn the fillets over with a spatula and transfer the pan to the oven. Roast for about 10 minutes, until the fillets are firm and flake easily when gently pierced with a fork. Meanwhile, gently warm the reserved chorizo oil in a small saucepan or skillet.
  • To serve, spoon equal amounts of the stew into the middle of warm pasta bowls or serving plates. Arrange a halibut fillet on top and garnish with the scallions and cilantro. Drizzle 1 teaspoon of the flavored chorizo oil around each fillet.


Chef’s Note

Spanish chorizo is available at good grocery stores or specialty food markets. The beautiful red coloring it gives to the oil in which it is cooked comes from its large quantity of paprika. This stew also makes a great appetizer or an accompaniment for grilled shrimp. You can substitute sea bass or grouper for the halibut.
Neiman Marcus Cookbook by Kevin Garvin

Adapted From

Neiman Marcus Cookbook

Buy On Amazon


Serving: 1 portionCalories: 957 kcalCarbohydrates: 50 gProtein: 94 gFat: 42 gSaturated Fat: 8 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 6 gMonounsaturated Fat: 24 gCholesterol: 222 mgSodium: 1975 mgPotassium: 2503 mgFiber: 14 gSugar: 11 gVitamin A: 3560 IUVitamin C: 24 mgCalcium: 178 mgIron: 7 mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2003 Kevin Garvin. Photo © 2003 Ellen Silverman. All rights reserved.

About David Leite

David Leite has received three James Beard Awards for his writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

Hungry For More?

Christmas Eve Calamari

The much-ballyhooed Italian Christmas classic, Feast of the Seven Fishes, stars one fish in Domenica Marchetti’s home. Calamari. And it’s the centerpiece of her Christmas Eve dinner.

1 hr 45 mins

Sticky Honey Garlic Shrimp

Skip the takeout and whip up this fast and easy honey garlic shrimp. Your tastebuds and your wallet will thank you.

25 mins

Champagne Butter Clams with Sourdough Toast

Our testers are raving about these buttery clams that are gently simmered in sparkling wine and roasted garlic butter. We’re willing to bet you will be, too.

1 hr 10 mins

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    This was an amazing dish. I usually make my own beans but the canned ones were fine here. We used spicy chorizo from Spain and loved the contrasting flavors and textures. A total hit!

  2. 5 stars
    This is the BEST halibut dish I have had. Like many of the recipes available through Leite’s, it is super-easy to make and is absolutely delicious. When purchasing your chorizo, make sure it’s more sweet then spicy so as to complement the delicate flavors of the dish. I would recommend this to even the most picky fish eaters. 🙂


    1. Lovely to hear, you’re very welcome. And thank you for the cautionary tale on the chorizo, something that could easily be overlooked otherwise.