Whole Stuffed Fish was this month’s challenge on #FishFridayFoodies. This recipe for Whole Red Snapper stuffed with Tomatoes, Peppers, Shallots and Garlic is simple and can easily be adapted for use with just fillets (if you don’t want to tackle a whole fish).
One of the things I most like about participating in the #FishFridayFoodies blogger event each month is that this group is simply not afraid to tackle less than typical challenges. For this month’s whole stuffed fish, for instance, when I went to The Shrimp Dock in Maryville, Tennessee to pick up my fish they told me that most people don’t want to work with a whole fish.
Either because of dealing with bones, or having to look at a fish head, or that it’s too much fish, people prefer to cook with fillets. For that reason, this recipe can be adapted for use with fillets, too. Instead of stuffing the fish, you could just cook the fish atop the stuffing. Simple.
And this recipe is easy. Very, very easy. All you do is combine seeded cherry tomatoes (halved tomatoes that you press your finger in to pop out the seeds), sweet bell pepper slices, diced shallots, minced garlic, chopped parsley, oregano leaves, thyme leaves, salt, pepper, paprika, olive oil and dry white vermouth. The outside of the fish is rubbed with olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper (I also added some of the garlic and herb remnants from the bowl of stuffing), and baked. Here are my ingredients assembled for preparation.
I purchased my fish already gutted, scaled and with the gills removed. Your local fish market will do this for you and it makes it much easier (and frankly, less messy). I’m sure that they would also bone the fish for you, but I love doing that myself.
Since the cavity of the snapper is pretty small, I wanted all the bones removed so that there would be a larger space for the stuffing, but also to make it easier to serve and eat, without the bones. Here’s what mine looked like when I finished.
Then it’s just a matter of assembly and baking. For a whole fish of 3-4 pounds (four servings), it took 40 minutes to bake. If you are placing fillets on top of the stuffing, it will take 15-20 minutes, all in a 375° F oven.
I served ours with some fettuccine that I drizzled with olive oil, salt and pepper. The herbed stuffing from the fish was lovely with both the pasta and the fish.
It was delicious. Either as a whole fish, or as fillets, do try this!
Also, check out the other whole stuffed fish recipes submitted by other Fish Friday Foodie cooks in the links below!
- 1 - 3-4 pound whole red snapper
- 2 cups halved, seeded cherry tomatoes
- 1 cup sliced sweet bell peppers (I used mini peppers and slice them in rings)
- 1 cup diced shallot
- ½ cup chopped flat leaf parsley
- ¼ cup dry white vermouth (or dry white wine)
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- Preheat the oven to 375° F.
- On a baking sheet lined with parchment, or foil, lightly spray the surface with cooking spray.
- Place the fish on the lined baking sheet and rub the skin with a small amount of olive oil.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
- Open the cavity of the fish and place the stuffing inside (some will probably spill out, that's fine). *See notes if using fillets
- Place the baking sheet into the preheated oven and bake for about 40 minutes, or until the juices run clear.
- Remove from the oven and allow to rest for about 5 minutes before removing to a platter. The serving yield will be about 2 servings per side of the fish, distributing the stuffing evenly among the servings.