I took a half day at work recently to spend time with my Dad. After taking him to Macy's to get a pair of long over due blue jeans we made our way up to Columbus Circle and spent some time wandering the Williams Sonoma store in the Time Warner center. In the back of the store they were holding a cooking demo and dinner for a small private group of guests. Naturally we stopped and watched the greater part of the dinner being made and when they started serving the meal my Dad said a couple awkward comments to the guests about them giving him a sample and then we left. Anyways, I learned some important things about making tomato based sauces! An important tip is simply timing. When making these tomato based sauces it's important to let the sauce simmer for a very long time, that is how it thickens and gets that superb taste. I wanted to make a main course to go with the stuffed poblano peppers so I decided to make a Veracruz style red snapper. I found this recipe on epicurious.com and adapted it to make a thicker and more flavorful sauce. The sauce that I made for the fish would taste great with chicken or on a pizza with cheese! Shabbat Shalom everyone! Cheers to a Mexican Shabbat! Here is a picture of the sauce:
Veracruz Red Snapper
4 red snapper fillets1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice, well drained, juices reserved
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped white onion
5 large garlic cloves, chopped
3 small bay leaves
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoons oregano
1/3 cup chopped pitted green olives
1/4 cup raisins
2 tablespoons drained capers
1. Place drained tomatoes in medium bowl. Using the bottom of a jar, crush the tomatoes to a coarse puree. Drain again, reserve all the juices.
2. Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and stir 30 seconds. Add garlic and stir 30 seconds. Add tomato puree and cook 1 minute. Add bay leaves, parsley, oregano, and 1/4 cup reserved tomato juices. Simmer until sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Add olives, raisins, capers, and all remaining reserved tomato juices. Simmer until sauce thickens again, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Season sauce to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)
3. Preheat oven to 425°F. Spread 3 tablespoons sauce in bottom of 15x10x2-inch glass baking dish. Arrange fish atop sauce. Sprinkle fish lightly with pepper. Spoon remaining sauce over. Bake uncovered until fish is just opaque in center, about 18 minutes. Using long spatula, transfer fish with sauce to plates.