It’s Snapper season, and there’s a good chance that you’ll come across a mangrove snapper wherever you and your fishing rod roam. When you find one, you’ll find many. This is why we’re passing along one of our favorite Snapper recipes – Snapper Veracruz!
Snapper comes in a variety of shapes and sizes. They eat shrimp and crabs and steal your bait quicker than the mind can register your rod’s tug. When you feel that tap, tap, tap on the end of your line and come up with an empty hook, chances are you’ve hit a snapper hole. Since they are bottom feeders, they will head for the bottom once hooked. This action makes for a fun fight regardless of the size.
There are over 100 species of Snapper running from Massachusetts to Brazil and residing in tropical areas. Red, mangrove, and mutton snapper tend to be the most common in the Gulf. Their sweet, succulent, firm meat makes them a local’s favorite for a variety of dishes. They are also the subject of Veracruz’s most famous dish – Snapper Veracruz. Snapper Veracruz is known for its Mexican-meets-Mediterranean flavor combining simple ingredients and rich flavor that tantalizes the taste buds.
If you’re a beginner at cooking fish but have some experience chopping, this is your dish! It’s full of nutrients selenium, vitamin A, and potassium plus all those good-for-you oils in your fresh fish. The best part is, you can catch them inshore on Florida’s Gulf Coast ALL YEAR LONG.
Watch this video for a visual tutorial or follow the instruction below.
Capers (with juice)
Salt / Pepper
High-heat oil (We use Avocado oil)
1. Finely dice jalapeños, onion, and olives.
2. Cut tomatoes and limes into quarters.
3. Crush garlic.
4. Pre-heat oven to 425°.
5. Preheat skillet on medium-high.
6. Drop diced onions into the skillet and sauté until transparent.
7. Add tomatoes, jalapeños, olives, and garlic. Cook until Al dente.
8. Add dried Oregano to taste (1Tbsp). Cover, and set aside.
9. Oil baking dish with high-heat oil.
10. Spoon mixture into the bottom of the baking dish.
11. Place a single layer of filets over mixture.
12. Season filets with salt, pepper, cayenne, and lime juice.
13. Spoon another layer of the mixture on top of the filets. (Repeat steps 11 – 13.)
14. Bake 15-20 minutes or until fish flakes apart easily.
Serve with rice, greens, black beans, plantains, or your favorite Caribbean fare to add to the experience and remind us why we’re fishing, and eating, in the subtropics! All of these items can be found at our local grocery store, and if you don’t like cooking in your rig, you’ll find a great grill and stovetop at our tiki hut where you can piece together all the flavors of the dish sans baking.
Here in Terra Ceia Bay, we’re fishing, catching, and eating delicious meals regularly thanks to our on-the-water gem of a park, Fishermans Cove Resort. We hope to fish and dine with you soon!