Dredge the fish in the flour. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat until it shimmers. Add the fish and brown about 3 minutes on each side.
Carefully lift the fish out of the skillet and set it aside on a platter; sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Add the garlic and onions to the skillet sauté until onions are limp. Return the fish to the pan along with the thyme, olive, and wine or water.
Cover and cook 5 minutes or until the fish flakes when tested with a fork or the tip of a knife.