Up until recently, my only connection to red snapper was thanks to Weird Al Yankovic.
Ever see the cinematic tour de force “UHF”? A scene in the movie focuses on a game show, “Wheel of Fish,” where contestants spin the wheel in hopes of winning their weight in fish.
Good ol’ Phyllis Weaver is the first contestant to take a spin.
“A red snapper… very tasty!” comments the host.
Fast forward to last weekend, when I bought red snapper for the first time. For my first time working with this fish I opted for something fresh and easy, using this Gourmet recipe for guidance. It was a good resource since I’d never prepared red snapper and didn’t want to overcook the fish.
Red Snapper with Spicy Soy
One pound red snapper, cut into 4 four-ounce fillets, skin on
1 crown broccoli, chopped
1 bunch baby bok choy, washed and chopped
1 pound brown mushrooms, sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced, divided
½ cup soy sauce
¼ cup brown sugar
One walnut-size chunk ginger, peeled and sliced, divided
1 teaspoon sambal oelek
1 tablespoon oil, divided
To prepare sauce:
In a small saucepan over low heat, warm soy sauce, brown sugar, half of the minced garlic, half of the ginger and sambal oelek.
To prepare vegetables:
Stir-fry mushrooms and broccoli in non-stick pan for 3-5 minutes before adding bok choy. Cook a couple minutes more, until mushrooms are soft and broccoli is cooked but still a little firm.
To prepare snapper:
Lightly coat bottom of an 8-by-8 glass baking dish with half the olive oil and preheat in the oven at 275 degrees.
Heat the remaining olive oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and sauté two fillets at a time, skin side down, until skin is golden brown, about one minute. Turn fillets over and sauté until golden, about 30 seconds more. Remove fillets from pan and place them, skin side up, in baking dish. Bake fillets until just cooked through, 3-5 minutes.
To complete the dish, place vegetables in a bowl, top with fillet and drizzle with sauce.