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CooksQuest

Samba Snapper

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On a secluded island beach near Porto de Galinhas in Northeastern Brazil, I had the perfect red snapper. The fish, which was served whole, had a crispy and delicious salty exterior (without batter, breading, or heavy frying). Thick grilling lines were pronounced.

Does anyone know how it's done...?

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The skin was most likely briefly salt cured to remove it's moisture and harden the skin without effecting the raw flesh,

I would at this point make a few slices through the skin and halfway done the flesh from just below the gills to the mid section to ensure even cooking.

That's just my guess if it was not fried.


Turnip Greens are Better than Nothing. Ask the people who have tried both.

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Caped Chef,

You might be on to something...

Just to make sure, I should say that the exact fish I was to eat was presented to me before they started cooking it in a shed behind the beach. It looked as if it had been just plucked from the sea (i.e. not sitting in salt).

I'm wondering...can a "salt cure" be accomplished in 5-10 minutes? The waiting time for the dish was about 30 minutes.

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If it had in fact just been "plucked" from the sea you would need to wait for it to go through riga mortis before it could be enviserated and cooked.

I don't think a 10/15 minuts cure would do the trick, however if the cooked on indirect heat that could also explain why the skin was crisp.

I hope this helps a bit.

Why not go out and purchase a couple snappers and try both methodes and see what you come up with.

Good luck.


Turnip Greens are Better than Nothing. Ask the people who have tried both.

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My girlfriend has had the same style of dish on an island (los roques) in Venezula. She refers to the type of fish as "pargo" and said that it was fresh from the sea also, maybe only a couple of hours old. I cannot tell you how many times she has spoken of the dish, but she has me wanting it too. I am sure it is not a classic ethnic dish, but one that the cook has made many times before. None the less if anyone else has had this fish and observed the preperation, please let me know.


Cory Barrett

Pastry Chef

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Pargo is snapper.

Are you sure that the fish was not fried? it may not have been deep fried but maybe pan seared?

Los Roques is a national park made up of a series of tiny islands. They are barely inhabited and there really are no restaurants to speak of (two tiny shacks and a b&b that will serve a la carte). Almost all of the meals I have had there have been pan fired fish or steamed lobster usually with garlic sauce, lime, rice and some sort of cabbage salad (a meal on which I could survive for all eternity).

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Caped Chef,

You might be on to something...

Just to make sure, I should say that the exact fish I was to eat was presented to me before they started cooking it in a shed behind the beach. It looked as if it had been just plucked from the sea (i.e. not sitting in salt).

I'm wondering...can a "salt cure" be accomplished in 5-10 minutes? The waiting time for the dish was about 30 minutes.

If it was not a restaurant, then maybe the fish was kept in crushed ice mixed with sea salt.

Depending on the time of the year, Galinhas can get hot, so daily catch is quickly sent to Recife. I'm glad you enjoyed.

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On a secluded island beach near Porto de Galinhas .....

You would'nt happen to know the name of the island would you ? How far was it from the mainland shore ? Many years ago we visited an island for a day picnic, but the food was frango and caiperinhas unde the shade - The sun was blazing :cool:


anil

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Gran Roque is the main island where the posadas (b&bs) are. Kres Ki is one of the two most popular "small roques" (rocks or keys) that make up Los Roques. On either Kres Ki or Madras Ki there is a little restaurant shack, which must be where your girlfriend ate.

I have not eaten there but as I understand it is a seasonal restaurant run by lobster trappers (co-op).

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