Tuesday, September 15, 2009

red snapper with charred jalapeno vinaigrette over cheddar grits

Look like a lot of ingredients? It is but it’ll make the best vinaigrette you’ve ever tasted.

And what to put this spicy sauce on? Well, we took a look at all the fresh seafood at our favorite seafood market and lighted upon this lovely snapper. You know fish is fresh when your nose is inches from it and you can’t smell a thing. We picked up a huge filet (we cut ours into two servings) and headed home to make dinner.

Once we decided how to prepare the snapper, (because it took the majority of the day to figure out what we wanted to do with it) the rest was easy. Tasty, creamy, and oh so simple! We had a wonderfully spicy meal that was ready in under thirty minutes!

Red Snapper with Charred Jalapeno Vinaigrette over Cheddar Grits

Serves 2.

You can really put this vinaigrette on anything. We had the leftovers over scrambled eggs the next morning!

Charred Jalapeno Vinaigrette:

1 jalapeno pepper

3 tablespoons diced red onion

1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard or whole grain mustard

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

¼ cup rice wine vinegar

¾ cup olive oil

1 tablespoon sesame oil

2 tablespoons torn fresh basil leaves

1 tablespoon chipotle chile powder

Salt and pepper

Cheddar Grits:

2 cups water

1 cup uncooked grits

4 tablespoons butter

4 tablespoons sliced scallions

4 slices cooked bacon, chopped

4 ounces shredded Cheddar


2 6 ounce red snapper filets, scaled but with skin on

2 tablespoons Cajun spice

Salt and pepper

Canola oil

Begin by grilling the jalapeno until black and charred on the outside, about 4 minutes on each side. (You can also broil it in the oven till charred, about 7-8 minutes) Cool slightly and set aside.

Then, combine all the remaining vinaigrette ingredients in a blender and pureeing until smooth. Add jalapeno, without the stem, when cooled, and puree again. Set aside.

Meanwhile, bring water for grits to a boil. Add grits, reduce heat to medium low, and cook until grits are soft, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter, scallions, bacon and cheese, and keep covered in a warm place.

Preheat oven to 375˚. Clean your snapper and check for scales and bones. Coat both sides of red snapper with salt and pepper and Cajun spice.

Then, on the stovetop, heat some canola oil in a large sauté pan, and when it begins to shimmer, sear each side of the fish. When you place the filet into the pan, leave it undisturbed for a couple of minutes to allow the seasoning to cook into the surface of the fish. Cook until golden brown, then finish in the oven for a further 2 to 3 minutes and remove it to rest for 5 to 8 minutes.

Place some of the grits in the middle of serving plate, then position a fish filet on top, and drizzle the vinaigrette around and on top of the fish. Serve with a tossed salad on the side and enjoy!

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