Leave the skin on the snapper because “it is thin and delicate and keeps the fish intact while it cooks,” Dave Lieberman and Anahad O’Connor write. “Whatever you do don’t cook the fish longer than just a few minutes, as the fish is so tender it can easily get overcooked. That also means you need to serve the soup as soon as it is ready.”
Lemongrass, Lime and Snapper Soup
1 fresh lemongrass stalk, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 tablespoon finely grated ginger
2 small fresh red Thai chiles, thinly sliced
2 large shallots, peeled and very thinly sliced
1 cup cored and chopped tomato
1 quart fish or seafood stock, preferably homemade
1 cup light coconut milk (see note)
Salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
About 1 1/2 pounds skin-on snapper fillet, cut into about 1-inch pieces
Juice and grated zest of 1 small lime
1 small bunch of fresh cilantro, tough stems removed, roughly chopped
Combine the lemongrass, ginger, chiles, shallots, tomato, stock and coconut milk in a large pot and bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Cook for about 20 minutes. Remove the pieces of lemongrass. Season the broth with salt and pepper to taste.
Reduce the heat to medium-low and slide the fish pieces into the broth along with the lime juice and zest. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the fish has just cooked through.
Divide the soup among 6 bowls and garnish each with chopped fresh cilantro.
Note: Light coconut milk is simply coconut milk with an equal part of water added to it. Make your own instead of buying it.
Makes 6 servings.
From “The 10 Things You Need to Eat” by Dave Lieberman and Anahad O’Connor