Pan Seared Grouper & Garlic Butter Cream Sauce

Posted by johngl

I’ve been a bit harried lately and several of my devoted following have made me aware that I haven’t done any cooking (that I have posted about) since the 6th.  Sadly, earning a living gets in the way of what I do for fun.  If everyone who visits the Alcoholian each gave me a dollar ten dollars, I could earn a nice living and cook/post full time.  Until such time…

Anyway, here’s some food I cooked last night:

Grouper and a Salad
Pan Seared Grouper Fillet with Garlic, Butter, and Cream Sauce

The most glorious spousal unit found herself wandering through Central Market’s meat and seafood department and noticed the guys filleting some grouper.  You can’t get much fresher fish than that (in Austin), so she picked some up:


Apparently the guys were in a bit of a hurry and didn’t trim these up as well as they could have and I didn’t notice (at this stage) some fin bones were still attached to that larger fillet.

Never one to be satisfied with the most glorious one’s statements about watching them cut the fillet off the damn fish, I gave it a whiff.  Really, it is just a force of habit.  I can’t cook fish without smelling it first.  It passed the sniff test.

So, I patted the fillets dry and gave them an even coat of salt, pepper, and a tiny bit of garlic powder.  I added some olive oil to a pan and set it at medium heat.  The fish still had the skin on it, so it went skin-side down into the pan.

skin-side down

About here is where I got pre-occupied with cooking and forgot all about taking pictures.  Yes, that still happens.  Poop.

Anyway, while this fish was sizzling away in the pan, I finely chopped some garlic and mixed that with a bit of salt, pepper, and piquin powder.  Checking the fish, I noticed it was about ready to flip.

I deglazed the pan with some dry white wine and let most of it evaporate.  Then, while adding a couple of ounces of heavy cream to the pan, I added the garlic, salt, pepper blend and mixed that up a bit.  I turned the fish so that the uncooked portion went into the cream.  I turned the heat down low.

The most glorious one got the salad greens on the plates and prepared the wine.    The one was a 2007 Bleasdale Verdelho from the Potts Family of Langhorne Creek.  Giving it an obligatory whiff as well, I noticed some lemony and floral notes.  On the palate, the citrus followed through as well as some green apple and maybe a little kiwi.  It was fresh and acidic and it would pair nicely with the cream and butter sauce.

Where was I?  Oh, yeah.  The fish.

The fish was ready, so I finished the sauce with about four tablespoons of cold butter.  Inspired by the wine, I also added a tiny bit of lime juice, just for fun.

Plating the fish, I gave both the salad and the grouper a hit of some coarsely ground black pepper.  The sauce was nicely thickened and I spooned it over the fish, finishing the plating with some fresh-cut chives.

finished plate

This is the most glorious one’s plate.  She got the non-boned end of the fillet.  I, on the other hand, took my first forkful right out of area with the fin bones in it.

Bummer.  A mouth full of tiny fish bones.  Next time I will check the work of the fish mongers more thoroughly!

Anyway, once I got past that first bite, the fish was moist, tender, and flaky, the sauce rich and creamy, and the wine cut through the fat of the sauce beautifully.

I’d like my ten dollars please.

This entry was posted in Meat, Recipes: Eats, Techniques, Water, Wine and tagged , by johngl. Bookmark the permalink.

About johngl

A bit of a wildman, John hails from the Midwest: A land of corn, cows, pigs, and a host of other healthfully meaty pursuits. Born on a dark and stormy night in late Fall, John grew up as the son of a meat cutter. There was always plenty of meat at hand. While not wealthy by any stretch of the imagination, his family certainly ate well. According to his father, that was the whole point.

4 thoughts on “Pan Seared Grouper & Garlic Butter Cream Sauce

  1. Can’t wait to try this, just bought the grouper from the fish monger in Jackson, Tennessee, who has maintained a reputation for fresh seafood for several months. I love cream sauces, so I will comment on how it goes.

  2. Thanks, it’s one of the nicest recipes for grouper I have ever seen, simple and easy to mod. No lime? Use lemon…try a shallot…ect.

  3. Looks delicious. Simple yet so very flavorful. How nice of you to give your glorious spousal unit the deboned piece;).. Her salad greens look lovely also. What a perfect dinner!!

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