• Prep Time
    1 hour
  • Cook Time
    2 hours including jam
  • Serving
  • View

Omg, this is delicious.  Pan Roasted Red Snapper with a Crispy Skin and Red Onion Jam with Blood Orange Beurre Blanc.  This recipe was inspired by a dish at Desi Vega’s in Metairie. The menu description there is Red Snapper with snow crab, baby bok choy, satsuma butter, and red onion marmalade.  I think the bok choy is delicious in that dish and next time I may add that to my rendition. But the snow crab adds nothing to the restaurant entree aside from a little sweetness and so I omitted that. (Who wants fake crabmeat on a beautiful piece of fresh fish?)  Instead of the satsuma butter, I made a luscious Blood Orange Beurre Blanc. The color was stunning. This dish turned out really well, and it was fun to make while I watched “No Way to Treat a Lady,” (1968) with Rod Steiger and Lee Remick.  I made the jam while I slow-watched the movie.  I made the Beurre Blanc and held it in a Pyrex measuring cup set down in a few inches of warm water in a sauce pan over very low heat.  The fish of course cooks quickly, so I that was when I put the movie on pause, got my saute pan hot and finished the dish in about 10 minutes. This dish would be a great dinner party dish, but if you’re having a dinner party by yourself it’s even better.  One of the perks of living in New Orleans is that you can get gorgeous fresh red snapper at one of the fish markets close to the lake – just be sure that if you cook it with the skin on, you get the skin crispy.  The Blood Orange Beurre Blanc sauce has just enough of a bitter/sweet note to contrast perfectly with the red onion jam.  Make this when you are treating yourself and pair it with a big Chardonnay or Champagne. Make this when you’re enjoying DINNER AND A SHOW.  Make this when you want to treat yourself to a special evening.  Make this dish and ENJOY making it and eating it.

For the Fish: Season the fish fillets with salt and pepper. Pour 3 tablespoons of oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, but not smoking, place fish in pan skin side down, gently pressing on the fish so it does not curl up. From this point turn down the heat to medium and do not touch the fish. The skin will become crispy and release itself from the pan. Cook for 4 minutes on the skin side, and turn the fish over, cooking for 2 more minutes or just until done. Keep warm.


When I find a good movie, I tend to SLOW WATCH it.  I’m cooking and watching movies — what’s the hurry?  If it’s a really entertaining movie, I stop it, pause it, “re-wind” it, and watch good scenes repeatedly.  It took me a good three hours to watch this black comedy with its late sixties decor, fashion and attitudes.  While the movie will likely not top anyone’s list of the best movies of all time, Lee Remick was charming, Rod Steiger was fascinating, and George Segal was likeable as Mo Brummel, the well intentioned detective.  Overall, this was a good way to spend a rainy Saturday night.





Roasted Red Snapper

Red Onion Jam

Blood Orange Beurre Blanc


    Step 1

    Make the jam first: Slice the red onion on a mandolin. Put a few TBS of butter in a hot saute pan, toss in the red onions and stir with a wooden spoon. Lower heat. Cook 8 to 10 minutes.

    Step 2

    When the onions are wilted and caramelized, add the brown sugar, the vinegars, and the red wine. Cook down for about an hour until you have a sweet and sour jam. Salt to taste. NOTE: I made a smaller portion of this jam so I used only one red onion and adjusted the sugar, wine and vinegar accordingly (to taste). Just TASTE as you cook!

    Step 3

    Make the blood orange beurre blanc. Put 1/2 cup blood orange juice and 1/2 cup white wine in a sauce pan and cook over medium low heat until almost a syrup.

    Step 4

    Add two sticks of butter a pat at a time. Regulate the heat so that the butter melts quickly but when you whisk, you make streaks on the bottom of the pan. Whisk constantly. Whisk the butter into syrup until you have a thick sauce, and at the end, add a few TBS of heavy cream.

    Step 5

    Keep sauce warm in a measuring cup that you hold in a water bath in the saucepan. In other words, pour the sauce in the cup, put the cup in the pan that has a few inches of warm water in it and hold over very low heat. Cover the sauce with saran wrap. Check the water every so often to make sure it doesn't get too hot (the sauce will break if it is overheated).

    Step 6

    Cook the fish. Heat the olive oil over high heat in a big skillet. When the oil is almost smoking, put the fish skin side down in the hot skillet. It should sizzle. Let it cook for 4 minutes. Don't move during this time because if you do the skin will stick. It will loosen when it crisps and has cooked properly. Once you put the fish skin side down in the skillet, turn down the heat. After 4 minutes, turn the fish and cook two more minutes.

    Step 7

    To plate: Put the fish on the plate. Nap with sauce. Top with jam. Garnish with fresh little flowers and sprinkle with chives.

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