I really had a good time making this!
First, because it involved very little work, 2nd because I was listening to Bonobo [thank you Gem for turning me onto this] and lastly because it only took 6 main ingredients. *fist pump*
Being in my new kitchen has its limitations and sometimes makes me miss my old one, but as long as I’m able to make killer food like this, I don’t feel so indigent 🙂
Coconut Poached Snapper and Cucumber Black Rice
What I Used:
Fresh Whole Snapper. Cilantro. Coconut Cream/Milk. ½ Yellow Onion [diced]. Garlic [minced]. Black Wild Rice [Basmati]. Olive Oil. Baby Cucumber. Salt. Pepper.
What I Did:
Basmati rice can take a while to cook, so the first thing I did was thoroughly rinse my rice and set it to cook in salted water according to the directions on the bag. The Black rice would take 45 mins to completely cook. Sheesh!! I know right?
But with the rice on and out the way, I could finally start playing with the fish.
Snapper is such an awesome fish! No seriously… it has very little fat, absorbs flavor like whoa!, doesn’t take long to cook and best of all…isn’t a fishy fish. If you’re not a fish person and want to venture out that comfort zone a bit, you owe it to yourself to try Snapper.
So anyway, I began by giving my fish a good rinse and pat-dried it on tin-foil.
Side note: the key to choosing fresh snapper is in the smell. Wherever you buy Snapper [or any fish for that matter]…ask to smell it. Specifically it’s belly [provided it’s already gutted]. Don’t just go by how it looks.
The belly should smell fresh, like the ocean. If it smells swampy…forget it. The eyes should also be clear. If the eyes have a cloudy look to them…forget it. Some fisherman will try and rub baking soda over the fish to give the skin a vibrant look… trust me…look at the eyes and sniff the belly. Nothing esoteric to it.
Ok, so then I make 3 diagonal slices across the Snapper [both sides] and seasoned the slits and the inside of the fish with an even distribution of Salt & Pepper. Then I set my fish aside to ‘rest’ while I began the Coconut Sauce.
The Coconut Sauce
In a large pan, I sautéed 1 tbsp of minced garlic and ~ ½ cup of the diced onion in 1 tbsp of Olive Oil.
When the garlic and onion were fragrant, I emptied 1 can of Coconut Cream in and stirred it all together. I let it cook down for about 5 mins, allowing it to thicken a bit before seasoning it with Salt & Pepper.
Then I added my snapper, carefully spooning the sauce over the top of the fish.
I let it cook like this for about 5 mins, repeatedly coating the top of the fish with the sauce, before turning it over and iterating the same process on the other side of the fish.
When I turned it over, I gently stuffed the inside of the fish with chopped Cilantro [1/2 to 1 cup]. It was the right thing to do.
Note: If you use Coconut cream [like me], you’ll want to be sure to keep the sauce well mixed, as the cream will want to coagulate from the rest of the sauce.
When my fish was properly cooked through – insert any metal object to test this [if it feels warm when you pull it out, that babys ready], I turned my flame off and set it aside.
Right before serving, you’ll want to dice the cucumber [1/2 cup] and toss it in with the Black Rice.
I didn’t do mine this way [tossed it in when the rice was only half-way done] and as a result, lost the wonderful green coloring of the cucumber in the finished product. Don’t be like me.
Serve the Cucumber Black Rice on the side of the Fish or with the Fish on top of it, either way, be sure to spoon some of that delicious Coconut Sauce with it!
What do you think?
And you like this recipe…share it around!