A few weeks ago, I was talking with a friend who lives near a great seafood market. He is so lucky to have delicious fish straight off the boat at a great market with helpful service. We decided to have a fun little dinner where he would bring some thing fresh from the market and I would see what I could come up with. He was kind enough to call when he was at the store so I had a little advance notice - we were having a red snapper that he bought whole but had them fillet and some calamari. I was tempted by the idea of soft-shell crab earlier in the week so I had to stop by the store to grab a few of those as well.
I was really excited to cook with the red snapper since it was new to me and I have seen so many great recipes with the whole fish (though a check of the Seafoood Watch list made me feel bad! yikes...now I know why I have never used it). We weren't really ready for a whole fish just yet but the fillets worked out perfectly. I decided to go for a marinade with lime, cilantro and garlic and then I baked it. Before marinading the fillet, I attempted to remove some of the bones but it was pretty difficult and was a bit messy so I abandoned that quickly - any tips besides just going at them with pliers should I get this or another similar fish?
The calamari was fried using the same recipe as the soft-shell crabs. I had intentions of making a grilled calamari with hot peppers with an Asian influence dish but I just couldn't resist once we started talking about how delicious it was fried. Frying calamari is similar to the soft-shell crabs however, because they are much smaller and there are so many more pieces you need to pay much closer attention to ensure that they don't overcook which is where the resemblance to "rubber bands" comes from.They were served with some marinara sauce and a wasabi remoulade.
Red Snapper with Lime, Cilantro and Garlic
6 fillets of snapper
1 bunch of cilantro - leaves only diced
4 scallions - diced
4 cloves of garlic - diced
Juice of 2 limes
1/2 jalapeno - finely diced
salt & pepper
1) Coat a baking dish in oil.
2) Prepare the fillets by rubbing each one with a small amount of oil and then sprinkling with salt & pepper
3) Place fillets in a single layer, skin side down
4) Cover fillets with the cilantro, scallions, garlic, jalapeno and lime and cover
5) Allow to sit in the refrigerator for 20-30 min (be careful not to do this too long because it will make the snapper into ceviche!)
6) Heat the oven to 350F
7) Place baking dish in the oven and cook until fish is opaque (about 7-9 min)