Jacques-Imos' Blackened Gulf Fish

  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 40 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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Ingredients

4 (6-ounce) redfish fillets

1 teaspoon Creole Seafood Seasoning, recipe follows

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/4 cup Hollandaise Sauce, recipe follows

1 teaspoon Asian chili-garlic sauce, such as sambal olek

1 teaspoon chipotle powder

1/2 pound crabmeat

Creole Seafood Seasoning:

1/3 cup paprika

1/3 cup salt

1/4 cup powdered garlic

1/4 cup freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons powdered onion

2 tablespoons dried oregano

2 tablespoons cayenne pepper

2 tablespoons dried thyme

HOLLANDAISE SAUCE:

1 pound unsalted butter

4 tablespoons margarine

4 egg yolks

2 teaspoons lemon juice

2 teaspoons white wine

1/2 teaspoon hot sauce

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Directions

  1. Lightly sprinkle the fish with the Creole Seafood Seasoning.
  2. In a hot cast-iron skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Sear the fish on both sides until the flesh is opaque about 3 minutes each side.
  3. Combine the Hollandaise Sauce with chili-garlic sauce, chipotle powder and crabmeat.
  4. Serve each fillet with 1/4 cup sauce.

Creole Seafood Seasoning:

  1. Combine all the ingredients and mix. Store in a sealed container.

HOLLANDAISE SAUCE:

  1. Melt the butter and margarine in a 1-quart saucepan over low heat. Raise the heat and bring to a rapid boil. Remove from the heat and cool, about 5 minutes. Skim the foam from the top and discard. Pour the butter into a large glass measuring cup and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium stainless steel mixing bowl or in the top of a double boiler, combine all the remaining ingredients. Mix together with a metal whisk until blended.
  3. Place the bowl over a pan of slowly simmering, but not boiling, water. The bowl must never touch the water. Vigorously whisk the egg mixture, picking up the bowl frequently to let the steam escape. Whip until the egg mixture is very light and creamy and has a sheen, 6 to 8 minutes. This amount of beating is important so that the cooked eggs will better be able to hold the butter. Remove the bowl from the pan of hot water. Gradually ladle about 1/4 cup of the butter mixture (use the top butterfat, not the butter solids on the bottom) into the egg mixture while vigorously whipping the sauce. Make sure the butter you add is well mixed into the sauce before adding more. Continue gradually adding the surface butterfat until you've added about 1 cup.
  4. So that you can get to the butter solids, ladle out and reserve about 1/2 cup surface butterfat into the sauce, whisking well. Use any remaining bottom solids in another dish. Then, gradually whisk in enough of the reserved top butterfat to produce a fairly thick sauce. The butterfat thickens the sauce, so you may not need to use it all. Serve immediately (or as soon as possible, keeping the sauce in a warm place, such as on top of the stove, until ready to serve).

Cook’s Note

Beat the yolks over heat long enough to fill them with lots of air bubbles - but be careful to control the heat so the yolks don't harden. In order for the butter to enter, fill and expand the bubbles in the yolks, they have to be in a liquid state. Once you start adding the melted butter, don't apply heat again because that would cause the oil to expand too much and break the air bubbles, resulting in a separated sauce. For the same reason, don't reheat the sauce once it is completed. Don't let the sauce get too cool, either, because the oil will congeal and contract and cause the bubbles to burst. The ideal is to keep the sauce as close to body temperature as possible.

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