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Sauteed Red Snapper with Orange Chile Sauce

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Sauteed Red Snapper with Orange Chile Sauce

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Sauteed Red Snapper with Chile Sauce

For the Fish:
2 filets of Red Snapper, or any local firm-fleshed fish

For the Salsa:
2 T oil
2 Guajillo chiles
3 Ancho chiles
2 cups chicken broth
1 bay leaf
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1/2 onion, cut into slivers
Juice of two oranges
1 cinnamon stick
3 cloves
Salt for taste

For the Salsa:

In a dry pan, toast the chiles and then transfer them to a bowl and cover them with hot water.

Once they are soft, seed and de-vein them.

Heat up the oil to be quite hot.

Saute the onion, and add in the garlic and the bay leaf. You want the onions gain some color.

Add in the chiles with some of their soaking water and cook them a little as well. Pour in the chicken broth.

Bring the broth to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Let it simmer for about 15 minutes.

Remove the bay leaf. Blend the contents of the pan in a blender, then strain through a sieve. You do this so that the chile skins and any renegade seeds are caught.

Pour the sauce back into the pan, and turn up the heat again.

Add in the freshly squeezed orange juice as well as the two cloves and cinnamon stick.

Season and lightly simmer for another 15- 30 minutes. The flavors will start to meld together slowly.

I think it is best to turn the heat off and go about preparing everything else. The more the flavors can sit together, the richer the sauce will be.

Reheat the sauce when you are ready to serve the fish.

Slice two parallel slits in the skin of the filets, being careful not to slice too far into the flesh. Season the flesh well with salt.

Heat up another saute pan with a few tablespoons of oil to be very hot.

Carefully slide the snapper filets into the pan and flatten them with the spatula.When you see that more than half of the flesh has been cooked through, flip the filets over and finish cooking on the other side.

Alternatively, bake the fillets (lightly brushed with oil) in a 400F oven for about 20 minutes.

Place each filet on a plate, and then pour over the sauce.

Garnish with the mole crumble (see below) or with sesame seeds, and serve with fresh corn tortillas and steamed zucchini.

Serves 2 people for dinner, 3 if someone stays around too long.

Mole Crumble:

Take about 1 tablespoon of raw cacao nibs and 1 tablespoon of toasted peanuts. Pound them up with a mortar and pestle. Mix in about 1/2 tsp of sesame seeds. Use as a garnish for the Chile Sauce.

September 17, 2007

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