By Jay Potter
We enjoy sharing our experiences catching fish in KC Kayaks, so we thought we’d also take y’all inside the KC kitchen and show you how we put those fish on the dinner table.
So here is the first installment of “Casting to Cast Iron.” Hope everyone enjoys, please share feedback on any attempts or variations on our recipe.
Pan-fried Louisiana Redfish fillets under a white wine and cream sauce with Cajun sausage, sauteed peppers, onions, garlic and herbs. Served with a spring mix salad with home grown tomatoes, red onion and a light garlic balsamic vinaigrette dressing. And as you can see from the pictures, everyone need grab his or her beverage of choice. Thanks to Corey and Katherine for the chef’s work and the kitchen!
You will need…
- Two good-sized burners
- Two skillets. Preferably one cast iron for the fish, and one sauce pan for the sauce. But just go with whatever you’ve got, it’ll be delicious!
- 2 x 20″ redfish fillets. Cut into small portions. (Don’t have redfish? Try black drum, any kind of trout, bass or any other white fish.)
- 1-2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning (We prefer Zatarin’s brand because it has less salt, but any kind will work.)
- 1-2 tablespoons of ground black pepper
- Canola oil (Enough just to coat the pan and to add a little more if some cooks off)
- 1 whole link of Cajun sausage thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 4 bell peppers various colors chopped
- 1 and 1/4 onion chopped
- 3 and 1/2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- One pint heavy cream
- One cup white wine
- One 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
- Basil, parsley and oregano chopped (as much or as little as you’d like)
- 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
You’ll prepare the sauce first so the veggies have time to cook down and let some of the liquid cook off. Then prepare a nice big salad and set that aside. Once your sauce is ready, the fish only take a matter of minutes and it’s dinner time.
To get started:
- Brown sausage in butter.
- Stir in peppers first, then onions, then garlic.
- Cook on medium to medium high for 7-8 minutes, stirring fairly often.
- Add tomatoes and white wine.
- Cook on medium for 5 minutes.
- Add 1 pint heavy cream, reduce heat slightly and let it go for about 3 minutes.
- Add basil and oregano and 1 tablespoon black pepper. Stir it up and keep it on for about 4 minutes on just under medium.
- Reduce to low and simmer 3 minutes.
- Cover and turn the burner as low as it will go.
- Let it cook down for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- About this time, turn your cast iron on at low-medium low to preheat.
- Add 1 teaspoon lemon juice. Stir and recover.
And now for the fish. The biggest thing here is not to over cook. You can always try a test piece or two to make sure that you 1) have the cast iron at the right temperature, and 2) have the right amount of oil in the pan.
- Coat your cast iron lightly in canola oil. Set it to medium high.
- One it has had time to heat. Drop in a tester piece of fish.
- Cook fish until slightly browned and just cooked through.
- Then go ahead with the rest of the fish, but DON’T OVERLOAD THE PAN.
- Turn up sauce to simmer nicely for serving.
- Serve Redfish fillets, top with sauce, garnish with a liberal about of parsley.
- Prepare a salad and set the table.
One last word on the sauce. There are several options here. We merely doused our redfish in sauce and set to work. It is not the thickest sauce, so certainly add flour if you prefer a thicker sauce. Or go ahead and serve it over rice. Or (my personal favorite) butter up some fresh french bread and use that as a “pusher” to make sure you get every last little bit.