Seared Gulf Red Snapper with Caramelized Fennel and Olive Crostini - - Archived

Prepare something out of the ordinary that is sure to impress your dinner guests! This blend of flavors that’s a favorite at The Mansion, will not be forgotten.


Seared Gulf Red Snapper with Caramelized Fennel and Olive CrostiniSaffron Sauce

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3 shallots, peeled and sliced
1 leek, white part only, cleaned and sliced
½ tablespoon cracked coriander seeds
½ tablespoon fennel seeds
Fennel stems, chopped
2 dried arbol chiles
½ tablespoon tomato paste
2 Roma tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon saffron
½ cup dry white wine
Bones and head of a red snapper fillet
3 lemon slices
Salt and black pepper


Caramelized Fennel

1 clove garlic
2 bulbs fennel, sliced, stems removed and reserved for the sauce above
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ tablespoon honey
2 cups chicken stock
Salt and black pepper


Olive Crostini

½ cup black olives, pitted
1 clove garlic, peeled
4 basil leaves
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 anchovy fillets
Salt and black pepper
¼ baguette



2 (1/2-pound) red snapper fillets, skin on, halved (ask your fish monger to save you the bones and one fish head)
Salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil


To make the sauces: In a large saucepot over medium heat, heat one tablespoon of the extra virgin olive oil. Add the garlic and shallots and cook for three minutes. Add the leek, coriander seeds, fennel seeds, fennel stems and arbol chiles and cook for five minutes, stirring often. Add the tomato paste, Roma tomatoes, thyme, saffron and white wine and cover with eight cups water. Drop the snapper bones and head and the lemon slices into the pot and cook for 45 minutes. Pass the mixture through a food mill to obtain a sauce base. Add two tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper and set aside.

To make the fennel: In a sauté pan over high heat, heat the garlic and fennel in two tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. Cook for eight minutes, or until the fennel begins to caramelize, stirring often. Add the honey and cook for two more minutes, then cover with the chicken stock. Reduce the heat and cook for 10 minutes, or until the liquid has evaporated. The mixture should be the consistency of marmalade. Add salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

To make the crostini: Using a food processor, combine the olives, garlic, basil, extra virgin olive oil and anchovies. Blend the mixture until smooth, season with salt and pepper, and set aside. Cut the baguette into 1/2-inch slices, spread the slices on a sheet pan and toast them under an oven broiler until golden brown.

To prepare the fist: Season the fillets with salt and pepper. Heat a nonstick sauté pan over high heat. Add one tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, place the fillet skin-side down and cook for five minutes or until the skin becomes crispy. Turn the fish and cook for two more minutes.

Divide the caramelized fennel among four large round plates and top with the pieces of fish. Pour the saffron sauce over the fish and serve with black olive crostini.


Serves 4


The Mansion, long-known for its sophisticated tradition of fine dining, reveals the recipes to many of their beloved dishes in the new cookbook The Mansion on Turtle Creek Cookbook: Haute Cuisine, Texas Style.


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