Pan-fried snapper with salsa verde


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This refreshing little recipe was inspired by something I saw a restaurant post on Instagram. I thought, ‘could probably do that’, plus it would go well with a bottle of Burgundy we had in the fridge.  

The fish was an approx 800gm snapper, which I had filleted by the fishmonger and I asked for the bones to be included too.

The salsa verde is easily knocked up in a pestle and mortar by roughly chopping together:

  • 4 anchovy fillets (the preserved kind, not fresh)
  • 3 large cloves of garlic
  • Pepper and easy on the salt, as the anchovies provide plenty
  • Zest of a lemon (use a grater)

Give that a good bash and then stir in some 

  • Extra virgin olive oil  
  • Lemon juice

Now add some green herbs – you could change which, based on what you’re preparing, but for this fish dish, I used predominantly:

  • Parsley and some coriander: about 5 tablespoons altogether

Stir that together, give it a taste and add more oil/lemon to your preference. 

For the fish, you can score the skin side to avoid the fish curling during cooking (which causes uneven cooking). 

Cook it skin side down (if you find the fish is curling, but you need your hands for other things, stick a small plate on the fish to keep it flat) until the fish is nearly cooked all the way through, then give it a maximum 30 seconds on the other side. Rest the fish on a plate near the warm hob. 

Leave the pan on the heat for the beans. 

  • Tin of canellini beans

Drain the beans and toss them in the pan for 2 mins to warm through. Turn off the heat, add a bit of salsa verde and toss them before placing them on the plate.

Bung the fish on top and then a bit of salsa verde on top. Serve with new potatoes. And a good wine. 

For bonus points… While I was preparing the meal, I boiled the fish bones with some vegetables. After straining, I picked as much spare fish from the bones and put it back into the broth (I ended up with about 300ml, after reducing it) along with some cooked potato, then blitzed it and added some seasoning and parsley. That made a great little appetiser. 

 
A nice drop of premier cru burgundy to go with… 

   
This was the end consistency of the salsa verde…quite rough: 

 

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