snapper vera cruz

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4 portions snapper (or any firm white fish)
lemon juice
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, halved and sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 red capsicum, thinly sliced in short strips
2 red chillies, thinly sliced (optional)
2 large tomatoes, cut in wedges
300g BBCC SALSA PICANTE (Mild or Medium)
1 bay leaf
¼ cup sliced pitted green olives (optional)
¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley
cooking instructions
Rub both sides of fish with lemon juice and sprinkle with salt and pepper. In a pan over medium-high heat, cook fish in 2 tablespoons olive oil for 1 minute on each side. Lift fish out gently and place in a baking dish. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil and sauté onion, garlic, capsicum and chillies until tender, about 5 minutes. Add tomato wedges, salsa, chilli sauce and bay leaf. Lower heat to simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Pour sauce over fish, sprinkle with olives and bake at 180°C for 30 minutes or until fish is cooked and flakes easily. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.
serves 4
advance preparation
Fish can be prepared up to the point of baking. Cover and refrigerate up to 4 hours and bake as directed above.
The sauce in this dish is very versatile and would be delicious with chicken breasts, pork chops or steak. Sliced black olives can be used in place of green olives.
serving idea
Serve fish on a bed of steamed long grain rice.

While visiting a small fishing village down the coast from Vera Cruz, John and I were served this dish outside a hut and dined quite happily with a few stray dogs and wandering chickens. We savoured every bite.