Snapper with a Spicy Tomato, Citrus and Herb Sauce

Snapper with a Spicy Tomato, Citrus and Herb Sauce

We wanted something fresh, light and zesty for dinner last night, this definitely fit the bill:

We pan-fried a beautiful fillet of snapper in some olive oil.  Just before the fish was cooked through, we removed it from the pan and then made a very fast sauce to go with the fish.  Onions were  quickly sautéed with some garlic and red pepper flakes then we deglazed the pan with a can of diced tomatoes.  Briny Kalamata olives, lemon and orange zest were added as well as a handful of bright green herbs.  The fish is then served on top of the spicy tomato sauce with a spritz of lemon juice.  We didn’t add any additional sides and were seriously happy campers.

UPDATE:   According to the National Marine Fisheries Service,  “The Gulf and South Atlantic red snapper populations are currently at very low levels (overfished), and both red snapper populations are being harvested at too high a rate (overfishing)….NOAA Fisheries Service also recently announced a temporary regulation to prohibit fishing for red snapper in the South Atlantic for six months beginning in January 2010.” (National Marine Fisheries Service, http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/fishwatch/species/red_snapper.htm).

Alternatives to Snapper in this dish are as follows: Halibut (Pacific), Pacific Cod, Pacific Black Cod (Sablefish) and even Striped Bass.

Snapper with a Spicy Tomato, Citrus and Herb Sauce
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Pan-fried snapper is topped with zesty tomato sauce with lemon, herbs and olives.
Yield: Serves 4
You Will Need
  • 1 pound snapper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced onions
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 1/3 cup kalamata olives
  • 1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons chopped dill
  • 2 teaspoons chopped chives
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • salt and pepper
Directions
  1. Heat a large frying pan/skillet on medium-high and add the olive oil. Season both sides of the snapper with salt and pepper then add to the hot olive oil and cook for about 3 minutes on each side (you want the snapper slightly undercooked). Remove the snapper from the pan and set aside.
  2. Turn down the heat to medium and add the onions, saute until transparent (you may need to add a little more olive oil if the pan is dry). Add the garlic and red pepper flakes then saute for 30 seconds (be careful the garlic does not burn). Next, add the lemon and orange zest, olives and can of diced tomatoes. Use a wooden spoon or similar to scrape the bottom of the pan.
  3. Allow the sauce to come to a simmer, add the herbs then taste for seasoning, you may need to add a bit of salt and pepper.
  4. Add the fish back into the pan to complete cooking and warm up (about 1 minute), then serve immediately with a spritz of lemon juice on top and garnish with extra herbs if desired.

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5 comments… Leave a Comment
  • Jenny May 5, 2010, 12:56 pm

    I stumbled across your blog through other blogs, and I made this recipe for my parents one night.
    Let me tell you what… they LOVED it… so did I!!!
    I’ve made it 3 times since.
    I did make a few adjustments though:
    I used salmon instead of snapper (it was on sale at the grocery store.) And, I threw in some cooked shrimp as well.

    We made a pot of couscous, and used that as a “bed” to put the fish and tomato mixture on top of. YUM!!!

    Keep the good recipes coming! 🙂

    Reply
    • inspiredtaste May 5, 2010, 1:42 pm

      Jenny, We are SO glad you enjoyed it! My mother just made it for the first time two nights ago and had some leftover, she then ate the rest last night and said it tasted even better.

      Thanks so much for commenting, we truly appreciate the feedback! Oh, and salmon instead of the snapper would be wonderful!

      Reply
  • Megan May 4, 2010, 9:33 am

    Just wondering what type of Snapper you used? Red Snapper is severely overfished so you should stick with something like Yellowtail Snapper.

    Reply
    • inspiredtaste May 4, 2010, 10:07 am

      Megan, thank you so much for your comment! After reading it, we researched what you had mentioned about Red Snapper in particular (a HUGE reason why we love comments on our blog – we get to learn so much from readers!)

      We bought our snapper from our local store in Alexandria (Balduccis). I have always had the impression and trusted that they sell sustainable produce, seafood, meats, etc… so I am unsure if what we bought was Red Snapper in particular…. I took a look at their website for more information, but no luck yet. Either way, you (rightly so) reminded us how important is it to really understand what we are buying no matter who we are buying it from.

      Alternatives to Snapper in this dish are as follows: Halibut (Pacific), Pacific Cod, Pacific Black Cod (Sablefish) and even Striped Bass.

      Here is a bit of info from our research:
      “The Gulf and South Atlantic red snapper populations are currently at very low levels (overfished), and both red snapper populations are being harvested at too high a rate (overfishing)….NOAA Fisheries Service also recently announced a temporary regulation to prohibit fishing for red snapper in the South Atlantic for six months beginning in January 2010.” (National Marine Fisheries Service, http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/fishwatch/species/red_snapper.htm)

      Thanks again!

      Reply

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