Ingredients Jump to Instructions ↓

  1. 1 1/2 pounds fish fillets

  2. 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

  3. 1/4 teaspoon salt

  4. 1 1/2 teaspoons vegetable oil

  5. 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil

  6. 1 medium onion -- thinly sliced

  7. 45 ounces good-quality tomatoes -- lightly drained

  8. 2 cloves garlic -- minced

  9. 12 meaty green olives -- pitted coarsely chopped

  10. 2 tablespoons large Spanish capers

  11. 2 medium pickled jalapeno chilies -- sliced plus:

  12. 1 tablespoon pickling juices

  13. 3/4 teaspoon dried marjoram

  14. 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme

  15. 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley **

  16. 3 bay leaves

  17. 1 one-inch cinnamon stick

  18. 2 whole cloves

  19. 1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns -- cracked fish broth -- bottled clam OR water salt -- (opt)

Instructions Jump to Ingredients ↑

  1. Preparation : * like boneless and skinless red snapper or halibut, in 6 1 1/2-inch thick piece. ** plus a few sprigs for garnish Rinse fillets, place them in a non aluminum dish and sprinkle them with lime juice and salt. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. In a large nonstick skillet, heat oils over medium heat, add onions and cook, stirring frequently, until golden, about 5 to 7 minutes. Cut tomatoes into 1 inch pieces and place them in a bowl, collecting the juices as you go. Add garlic to onion and cook for a minute or so, then add tomatoes. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, or until most of the liquid has evaporated. Divide olives and capers between two small bowls and set one aside to use for garnishes. To the other bowl, add jalapenos, pickling juice, marjoram, thyme and chopped parsley. If you don't want bay leaves, cinnamon, cloves and pepper in the finished sauce, wrap them in cheesecloth and tie with a string, otherwise add them directly to the olive mixture. Add the olive-herb mixture to the tomatoes, along with fish stock, clam ice or water. Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes, then taste, adding salt if necessary. Remove the cheesecloth bag, if using, and the bay leaves. Remove fillets from marinade and rinse. To cook on the stovetop, place them in the skillet, covering them well with sauce. Cover and cook over medium heat for 4 minutes. Turn the fillets over, cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes longer, until they flake when pressed firmly with a fork at the thickest part. Alternatively, to bake, preheat oven to 350F Place the fillets in a single layer in a lightly oiled baking dish. Spoon the sauce over them, cover with aluminum foil and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or just until the fish flakes when pressed firmly with a fork at the thickest part. Serve garnished with reserved olives, capers and parsley. From "Authentic Mexican: Regional Cooking from the Heart of Mexico" by Rick Bayless with Deann Groen Bayless (William Morrow and Company, 1987)


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