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Pan Fried Swai with Lemon and Garlic

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Ingredients:

  • 4 Swai fillets (about six ounces)
  • 1 ½ tablespoons seasoning salt of your choice
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves (plus more for garnish)
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic
  • ¾ cup yellow cornmeal
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon kosher or sea salt
  • 1 cup vegetable oil for frying
  • lemon wedges, for serving

Directions:

Place the Swai fillets in a shallow bowl or baking dish. Sprinkle with one tablespoon of the seasoning salt, then add the lemon juice, parsley and garlic. Turn the fillets several times to coat evenly. Allow to stand at room temperature for about ten minutes.

Combine the flour, cornmeal, salt and remaining seasoning salt in a shallow bowl. Remove the fillets from the marinade, shake off the excess, and dredge in the cornmeal mixture, coating evenly.

Heat the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the fillets in batches until golden brown, turning once, about four minutes per side. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain briefly on paper towels. Season with salt and serve with lemon wedges and parley.

Grilled Swai with Vera Cruz Relish

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic
  • 4 large Swai fillets
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 medium tomatoes, cored, seeded and diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced small
  • ¼ cup chopped green onion (green and white parts)
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh chile pepper of your choice
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
  • 1/3 cup good quality olive oil
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped fresh oregano leaves

Directions:

In a shallow pan that can hold the Swai fillets in a single layer, combine the juice, oil, and garlic, mixing well. Add the fillets, cover, and refrigerate for at least an hour (not more than 2), turning a few times.

Meanwhile, make the relish by combining the last seven ingredients in a bowl and mixing well. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Best used within three hours.

Remove the Swai fillets from the marinade and discard mixture. Pat the fillets dry with paper towels then grill at medium heat (over a barbecue or in a preheated grill pan) five minutes per side. Turn carefully to keep the fillets in one piece. When the fillets are done they should be just opaque throughout. Serve at once with the Vera Cruz relish.

Swai-on-a Stick

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Ingredients:

  • 4 Swai fillets (about four ounces each)
  • 12 (10 inch) bamboo skewers
  • 1 tablespoon Creole seasoning (or paprika, mixed herbs and cayenne)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher or sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons Creole or coarse grained mustard
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 more tablespoon Creole seasoning, as above
  • 4 cups vegetable oil for frying

Directions:

Cut each fillet lengthwise into three strips, about 1 ½ inches wide. Thread each strip onto a skewer and lay them in a shallow bowl or on a cookie sheet. Combine the seasonings, mustard and buttermilk, stirring to blend well. Pour the mixture over the fillets, cover loosely and refrigerate for six hours or overnight.

Remove the Swai fillets from the refrigerator and allow to drain briefly. Heat the oil in a large deep skillet, to about 360 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the
flour and remaining Creole seasoning. Dredge the skewers in the flour, shaking off any excess. Fry them in batches until golden brown, about four minutes per side. Drain on paper towels and serve hot with our Remoulade or your favorite dipping sauce.

For the Remoulade Sauce:

  • ¼ cup chopped green onions (green part only)
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh garlic
  • 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
  • 2 tablespoons Creole or whole-grained mustard
  • 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
  • 3 tablespoons catsup
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce of your choice
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon kosher or coarse salt
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil

Put all the ingredients except the oil in a food processor or blender and process until smooth, about thirty seconds. With the motor running, slowly pour in the vegetable oil through the feed tube. The sauce will thicken. Refrigerate covered for at least an hour before serving.

Baked Swai Rolls, Two Ways

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Ingredients:

  • 6 Swai fillets
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • 2 cups fresh, cleaned baby spinach leaves
  • juice of one lime
  • ½ cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon fresh oregano (or ¼ teaspoon dried)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 6 slices prosciutto, OR 6 long, pretty, fresh arugula leaves
  • ¼ cup chopped red bell pepper

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Trim the thin edges of the Swai fillets, so they
are nearly uniform in width. Melt the butter in a skillet, then gently sauté the
onion, garlic and green pepper about four minutes. Add the spinach and lime
juice, tossing until the spinach wilts. Stir in the bread crumbs, parsley, oregano,
salt and pepper, warming through for one more minute.

Spread the spinach filling evenly over the Swai fillets and roll them up. If you are
wrapping them with prosciutto, do it now and secure each roll with a short skewer
or toothpick. If you are wrapping some of them with arugula leaves, secure the
rolls first, before baking, and wrap with the leaf before serving.

Place the rolls in a shallow casserole or oven-proof pan, not touching each other,
and put one cup of water in the pan. Bake uncovered for thirty minutes. Sprinkle
chopped red pepper across the tops of the rolls and serve with rice or roasted
potatoes.

Swai Ceviche

Monday, January 17th, 2011

In Miami, there’s a different Ceviche recipe for every Latin cook – and we have lots of those! This one pulls from several national traditions and adds the sweet tang of grapefruit to the standard lime.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound Swai fillets, cut into ½ inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grapefruit zest
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime zest
  • ½ cup freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 medium tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1 small red onion, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons good quality olive oil
  • 4 fresh garlic cloves, sliced paper thin
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro leaves, no stems
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano leaves
  • 1 ½ teaspoons coarse or kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar (turbinado, if you have it)
  • ½ teaspoon toasted and ground cumin
  • 1 perfect fresh avocado, peeled and diced

Directions:

Put the Swai pieces, zests and juices into a large resealable plastic bag.
Refrigerate for at least an hour (not more than three), turning occasionally to
distribute the marinade.

Drain the marinade and put the fish in a large serving bowl. Add the vegetables
and seasonings, tossing gently to combine. (We like to add the avocado cubes
at the end so they look crisp and fresh.) Cover and refrigerate for 20 or 30
minutes before serving. Garnish with plantain chips or a few popped corn
kernels, as desired.

Swai Tacos with Chipotle Coleslaw

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Ingredients:

  • 3 (4 to 6 ounce) Swai fillets
  • ¼ cup milk or buttermilk
  • ¼ cup Creole or whole grain mustard
  • 1-2 teaspoons hot sauce, to your taste
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup flour
  • ¼ cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon Creole seasoning, or mixed dried herbs
  • 4 cups vegetable oil for frying
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • ½ pound finely shredded cabbage (green, red or mixed)
  • ¼ cup finely chopped red onion
  • ¼ cup finely chopped green onion
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 8 crispy corn tortilla shells

Directions:

Cut the Swai fillets into one inch strips on the diagonal. Mix the milk, mustard, hot sauce and salt in a medium bowl or resealable plastic bag, then add the Swai fillet strips and refrigerate for one hour.

Meanwhile, combine the mayonnaise, honey, chipotle and lime juice in a large bowl, mixing well. Toss with the shredded cabbage, red and green onions, salt and pepper to taste, and refrigerate until ready to assemble the tacos.

Heat the vegetable in a large skillet until hot but not smoking; a digital thermometer will read 350 degrees.

Combine the flour, cornmeal and seasoning in a shallow bowl, then dredge each strip of fish in the flour mixture until well coated on all sides. Lower the fish pieces into the hot oil gently and fry until golden brown on all sides, turning as needed, about three minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fish to drain on paper towels. Season with salt and pepper.

Divide the chipotle slaw and Swai strips among the taco shells – and enjoy!