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Old 04-07-2006, 10:12 PM   #1
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Pan Seared Snapper with Tomato-Fennel Confit

Was watching Essence of Emerill and he did a lobster with tomato confit that reminded me of a dish that I did awhile back. You can substitute halibut, arctic char, swordfish, sea bass, or monkfish.

Pan Seared Snapper with Tomato-Fennel Confit

Yield: 4 Servings


For the fish:
4 ea., 8 oz. Pink, Crimson, or Red Snapper Filets, skin on if possible
1/4 c. All-Purpose Flour
3 Tbsp. Oil for frying
Kosher salt and white pepper

For the confit:
2 lbs. Roma Tomatoes or equivalent
1 Fennel bulb, cut into 1/4" julienne
1-2 c. Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
4 Garlic cloves, thinly sliced
3 Bay Leaves
8-10 Fresh Thyme Sprigs


Prepare a pot of boiling water, and a large bowl or other vessel filled with iced water. On the bottom of each tomato, cut an X with the point of a paring or chef's knife. Each slit should be roughly an inch long, but try not to pierce too deep into the tomato's flesh. Place the tomatoes in the boiling water for about 1 minute, then immerse the tomatoes in the iced water to shock them and stop the cooking process. Remove them from the iced water and dry. Using a paring knife or vegetable peeler, skin the tomatoes starting at the < or > of the X. The skin should come off fairly easily. Cut the tomatoes into quarters, and remove the seeds and excess juice, and drain the tomatoes in a collander or dry on paper towels. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. In a shallow baking dish, place the tomatoes, garlic, and fennel in one layer. Add the herbs, season with kosher salt and pepper, and pour enough of the oil in to just barely come to the top of the tomatoes and fennel. Cover with foil, and roast in the oven for 1 hour.

Meanwhile, heat the frying oil in a saute pan until lightly smoking. Lightly dust the snapper on the side with the skin with flour, and season both sides with the salt and white pepper. You can score the skin side of the fish before adding the flour if you wish. Add the snapper to the pan, skin side down and fry until brown and crispy, about 3-4 minutes. Turn the fish over, and continue cooking until just barely cooked through, about 2-3 minutes. Serve immediately with the confit and oil from the confit.

Any extra confit can be stored in the fridge for up to 4 days. Any extra oil from the confit can be strained and stored for up to two weeks in the fridge.

"Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it."
Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
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