Thursday, February 18, 2010

Pescado a la Veracruzana (Veracruz style fish)

I made this last night and it was delicious and easy as hell. I had some extra mushrooms and cooked potatoes so I added those and it made it slightly more Italian feeling but great. I just had the leftover sauce on my rice and beans for lunch and it was fantastic day 2, so you could make the sauce ahead and just use it to cook the fish in the next day (for a dinner party or something).

Pescado a la Veracruzana (Veracruz style fish)
4-6 servings

White-fleshed fish fillets -- 2 pounds (I would recommend Barramundi which is a sustainable substitute for snapper)
Limes, juice only -- 2
Salt -- 1 teaspoon
Oil -- 2 tablespoons
Onion, sliced -- 1
Garlic, minced -- 2-3 cloves
Tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped -- 3 cups
Stock or water -- 1 cup
Green olives, pitted, chopped -- 1/3 cup (Mixed Spanish olives are a good choice)
Parsley, minced -- 3 tablespoons
Dried oregano -- 2 teaspoons
Chili Powder -- 1 teaspoon
Bay leaf -- 1
Capers rinsed -- 1 tablespoon
Pickled jalapeño peppers sliced into rounds -- 2-3 each
Cinnamon stick (optional) -- 1
Whole cloves (optional) -- 2-3
Salt and pepper -- to taste

Add the fish, lime juice and salt to a large bowl and marinate for 30 minutes to an hour.

While fish is marinating, heat the oil over medium flame in a large pot or skillet. Add the onions and sauté until translucent. Add garlic and continue sautéing for another minute.

Add remaining ingredients except for the fish, reduce heat to low and simmer for 10-15 minutes to meld flavors and reduce the sauce somewhat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Add the fish fillets and cover them with some of the sauce. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until fish is cooked through, 8-12 minutes. Serve with rice.

Red snapper is the fish most commonly used for this dish, but any firm white fish fillet will do. In Mexico, the fish is sometimes left whole for this preparation.

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