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Caribbean Barramundi 

The Bistro on 2nd

click to enlarge Caribbean Barramundi - BRIENNE BOORTZ
  • Brienne Boortz
  • Caribbean Barramundi

Ingredients

2 fresh barramundi fillets, 6 to 8 oz. each

1 tbsp. lemon juice

Salt

Pepper

For black bean gravy:

3 c. black beans, cooked, drained and rinsed

8 c. water

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tsp. cayenne pepper

3 oz. coconut milk

2 tbsp. unsalted butter

1 tbsp. diced green chilies, seeded

For bananas:

1 tbsp. unsalted butter

1 fresh banana, sliced lengthwise into quarters, then cut in half, to yield 8 pieces

For garnish:

½ red bell pepper, seeded and julienned

½ orange bell pepper, seeded and julienned

½ yellow bell pepper, seeded and julienned

12 oz. quinoa, cooked

1 c. commercial mango salsa

1 avocado, pitted and halved

4 to 6 orange or grapefruit segments

Preparation

For barramundi:

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Place fillets in shallow, oven-safe pan. Add lemon juice, salt, pepper and just enough water to cover the bottom of the pan. Place in oven uncovered and bake for 12 minutes.

For black bean gravy:

Combine black beans, water, garlic and cayenne in a large pot and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and rest for 10 minutes. Reserving the cooking liquid, strain the beans and put them in a blender. Puree into a paste and set aside. Ladle ½ c. cooking liquid into a sauté pan. Add coconut milk, butter and green chilies. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat. Slowly add black bean puree until mixture reaches desired thickness.

For bananas:

In a saucepan over low heat, melt 1 tbsp. butter and add sliced banana. Cook until softened and slightly caramelized.

Location Details The Bistro On 2nd
65 Second St.
Monument, CO
481-8822
Gourmet/eclectic

To serve

For each of two plates, place the raw peppers on plate, then cover with half of the quinoa, allowing peppers to show for color. Place barramundi atop quinoa. Drizzle the banana-butter sauce over the fish, then lay four banana strips atop. Top with black bean gravy and mango salsa. Place halved avocado on the plate and top with citrus segments. Garnish with any leftover banana pieces. Yields 2 servings.

Aftertaste

As with most of the recipes at The Bistro on 2nd, this is a collaboration of ideas and tastes from chef Kevin Clayton and me. Having lived in the Caribbean briefly, Kevin wanted to put a spin on a traditional Caribbean dish his family loved. We decided to cut back on the cayenne heat and Caribbean spices to go with my love for citrus and caramelized bananas, which still pairs nicely with the traditional black bean gravy. (Kevin notes that this dish has a mild heat — feel free to add more cayenne.)

Our guests have come to love the different tastes and twists we put on our dishes and sauces, especially those with fish. Our sauces can go from one extreme to another, from sweet to spicy, whereas the flavors of some restaurants are fairly similar and go in one direction. This comes from the cohesiveness between myself and Kevin in the kitchen. He may go in one direction with a sauce, I in another, and each time we come up with an even better finished product. Two mouths are better than one!

— Submitted by The Bistro on 2nd owner Rick Velliquette

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