Red Snapper A La Mexican

Course : Fish
Serves: 6
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6 fillets fresh red snapper filets
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
2 tablespoons flour for dredging
4 tablespoons olive oil
3 large shallots -- finely minced
3 large garlic cloves -- finely
6 medium ripe tomatoes -- peeled, seeded and -- chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh herbs -- (oregano, thyme)
1 medium ripe avocado
1 teaspoon lime juice
1/8 teaspoon Tabasco
1 recipe beurre manie*
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 medium avocado slices
1 medium lime slices
1 bunch fresh mint leaves

Preparation / Directions:

* Beurre Manie is a double boiler pan used to thicken sauces. Combine 1 T flour and 1 T sweet butter on a small flat plate and blend the mixture with a fork into a very smooth paste. Roll the paste into a ball. Preheat oven to 350F Season the fish filets with salt and pepper and dredge them lightly with flour, shaking off the excess. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and sauté the filets over high heat for 2 or 3 minutes on each side. Remove them carefully to a flameproof baking dish large enough to hold the fish in one layer. In the same oil, sauté the shallots and 2 cloves of garlic. When the shallots are lightly browned, add the tomatoes and cook the mixture for 2 minutes. Pour the mixture together with the herbs on top of the fish and cover the disk with buttered wax paper. Bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes. While the fish is baking, mash the avocado in a small mixing bowl, adding lime juice, salt, pepper, a little Tabasco, and the remaining clove of garlic. Do not mash it too fine; it should have some small chunks left in it. When the fish is ready, lift it out carefully onto a platter. Place the baking dish over direct heat and reduce the juices by 1/3. If a Beurre Manie is used for thickening, add it bit by bit before adding the avocado puree. Add the optional tomato paste. Lower the heat and beat in the mashed avocado. Once the avocado puree has been added, do not let the mixture come to a boil. Correct the seasoning and pour the sauce over the fish. Garnish with avocado slices, lime slices and mint leaves.

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