RED FISH CATCH AND COOK

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Bonsai is one of my passions, but I also love to fish.  Like most in the South, I grew up fishing.  My grandparents had a house on Fowl River, another at Orange Beach, and another had a camp in Mississippi.  My parents also took us on vacations at Gulf Shores, needless to say, my childhood memories are filled with glorious triumphs with a cane pole and reel and rod.

As luck would have it, this past Monday (1-28-2019), I had a little free time, a new reel and rod, and the taste for fresh fish.  So, Favorite Minion and I went to Daphin Island and I got a chance to "wet a hook".  The great thing about living in the Heart of Dixie is that I am never very far from the coast.  Dauphin Island is only a 40 minute ride.

If you ever are in the area, it is a great place to vist.  The beaches aren't busy like Gulf Shores, and if you are into history, you can visit Fort Gaines, a civil war fort that played an imprtant role in the battle of Mobile Bay.  You can also take the ferry across the bay (20 minute ride) and visit Fort Morgan, another civil war fort.

Anyway, we got to the Island kinda late, and after trying a few different kinds of bait, I managed to land this really nice Red fish.
Favorite Minion was with me, she is the best!  There are not words to describe how much she means to me nor to describe the support that she gives me on what ever endeavor I might come up with.
While we were there, we got to see a beautiful sunset.  Even if I did not catch a single fish, seeing the beauty of the sunset with Favorite Minion was worth the trip.
Well, since this is a catch and cook, we will have to clean the fish and prepare it for cooking.  I will spare you the gory details, but if there is enough interst, I will do a separate article on how to clean an filet a fish, it is a good skill to have.  I will, however, share the size of my catch, as it is the largest red fish that I have landed.  It was 26 inches long and weighed 12.5 pounds
Now, we have arrived at the cooking part of the article.  I have prepared pan fried red fish with pineapple salsa, roasted potatoes and onions seasoned with dill, and steamed brocolli with grated sharp cheddar cheese.  This recipie will work with most any kind of fish so don't be scared to give it a try.  The pineapple salsa is easy to make and pairs well with the fish.  It would also be good with pork or chicken.

We'll start first with the salsa.  All you need is pineapple (I use fresh pineapple, but canned will do if you don't have access to a fresh one), a red onion, a jalapeno pepper (if you don't like it spicy, a red bell pepper would work also), and cilantro.  Chop all of the ingredients up and mix them togehter, it doesn't get any easier than that.

Salsa Ingredients

Next, we prepare the potatoes and onions.  These were small so I just quartered them, the most important thing is to try to get them the same size so that you get even cooking.  If you can't find the seasoning that I used, just use some dill, salt, and pepper.  After slicing the taters and onions, put them in a bowl, drizzled them with olive oil, added the seasoning, transfered them to a baking dish, and bake a 425 degrees until the taters are done, about 25 -30 minutes.
While the potatoes and onions are cooking, prepare the brocolli.  I am not going into detail how to steam brocolli, as there are a million ways to do it.  If you need help, reach out to me.
Now it is time to prepare the fish.  Before frying, I season it with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic.  Then, lightly bread it with cornmeal.  Add a little oil to the pan ( I use Canola) and heat to medium high.  Add the fish and cook until golden brown on each side, about 3-5 minutes on each side.  Remove and drain on a paper towel.
You can purchase pre-grated cheese, but I find that if you grate it yourself you can get a finer grate which will melt easier on the brocolli.
Now that we have it all ready, it is time to plate it all.  My stomach is growling, just looking at it. Yummmmmmmm....
Spoon the salsa over the fish and sprinkle the grated cheddar over the brocolli.  Add salt and pepper to taste.
Don't forget about seconds, or thirds....
I hope that you enjoyed this "catch and cook".  I hope to add more in the later, so stay tuned to the Heart of Dixie Bonsai.

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