How To Make Ripe's Classic Pan-Fried Snapper And All Of Its Components

Mount Vernon Chef Nigel Spence shows every step of the way.



Pan-Seared Red Snapper Fillet with Sautéed Vegetables

  • 2 Red Snapper Fillets, skin on, 8oz each
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • Pinch of smoked salt
  • 2 Tbsp clarified butter
  • 1 cup sautéed vegetables (recipe follows)
  • 2 Tbsp Compound butter (recipe follows)
  • 2 oz Pumpkin Fish Broth (recipe follows)

Make two shallow 1 inch slits on skin side of fish.

Season flesh side of fish with salt and pepper. Season skin side with just a pinch of smoked salt (optional).

Heat clarified butter in sauté pan over medium heat.  Add fish flesh side down and cook for 2 minutes.  Flip to skin side and cook an additional 1 minute. Remove from stovetop and transfer to oven proof dish.  Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 5 more minutes.  Serve skin side up over sautéed vegetables and top with compound butter and pumpkin fish broth. 


Compound Butter

  • 1 pound butter
  • 4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp fresh chives, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp thyme, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp scotch bonnet pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/2  tsp smoked salt
  • Juice of 2 lemons

Chop the butter into uniform chunks.

Place the oil into the food processor and add the chives. Process until the chives are finely chopped. Add the thyme, cilantro and scotch bonnet pepper and smoked salt. Blend until the herbs have colored the oil.

With a whisk attachment on the food processor, whip the butter until it softens, about 5 minutes.

Add the herb oil and lemon juice to the butter and whisk until oil is fully incorporated about 4 minutes. Remove butter from bowl and spoon onto aluminum foil, parchment paper or plastic wrap. Roll into a log and chill in the refrigerator or store in freezer. Cut in 1/2 inch wheels to serve.


Jamaican Court Bouillon

  • 3 cups water
  • 1 large snapper or grouper fish head, about 1 pound
  • 1 1/2 cups West Indian pumpkin, peeled, seeded and large diced
  • 1 medium onion, rough chopped
  • 1 large carrot, rough chopped
  • 1 celery rib, rough chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 whole fresh scotch bonnet pepper (do not cut or pierce open)
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 6 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt

Combine all ingredients except pumpkin in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Strain through fine mesh sieve and return to saucepan.  Add the pumpkin and cook till softened about 20 minutes. Cool and transfer to a blender and puree.  Adjust seasonings and keep warm for service.  May be loosened with water if using to poach fish, or kept thicker to serve as a sauce for fish.


Sautéed Vegetables

  • 2 Tbsp Jamaican extra virgin coconut oil
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper, Large Julienne
  • 1/2 chayote, sliced thin
  • 16 whole okra, blanched
  • 1 whole green squash, cut in thick half moons
  • 1 medium carrot, cut in half moons, blanched  
  • 1/2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/2  Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp bottled Jamaican Scotch Bonnet pepper sauce
  • Dash of good Jamaican Dark Rum

In a large sauté pan over high heat, add the coconut oil and heat until almost smoking.

Add all of the vegetables and cook until just starting to char and soften, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic and saute, stirring, Add the thyme, balsamic vinegar and peppers sauce. Deglaze with rum. Remove from heat and serve.