With a reputation as one of the finest fish for the table, pompano lends itself to a range of treatments. This preparation requires a bit of assembly but yields an impressive presentation and combination of flavors and textures. The shrimp bisque also makes a fine stand-alone dish and may be augmented with roasted potatoes, corn or fish for a satisfying meal in itself.
Brandon McGlamery is head chef and partner of Luke’s in Maitland and Luma on Park and Prato in Winter Park, Florida, as well as the author of “9 Courses.”
4 pompano portions, skin removed
1⁄2 cup clarified butter, melted
Fingerling potatoes, peeled (about one per fish portion)
1 lb. shrimp, half peeled and deveined (shells reserved for broth), and half unpeeled and chopped
1 cup onion, sliced
1⁄2 cup carrot, peeled, sliced
1⁄2 cup celery, chopped
1⁄2 cup red pepper, sliced
1 tomato, chopped
4 cloves garlic
1 Tbsp. white rice
1 cup white wine
3 cups water or fish stock
1⁄2 cup cream
Cajun seasoning of your choice, to taste
Kohlrabi or mustard greens for garnish
- On a mandoline, slice the potatoes into thin coins.
- Melt clarified butter and brush it on the fish (skin side up), then place the potato coins on the fish, slightly overlapped, like scales.
- Brush the potato scales with the clarified butter and refrigerate for one hour.
- Heat a small amount of oil in a frying pan on high heat, season the fish with salt, and lay it scale side down in the hot oil.
- Reduce heat to medium and cook until potato scales are lightly browned.
- Flip fish and finish cooking, potato side up.
- Test with cake tester to determine if the fish is done.
- While the fish is refrigerating, place the onion, carrot, celery, red pepper, tomato, garlic, rice and seasoning in a saucepan and heat to sweat the mixture.
- Chop unpeeled shrimp into quarters and add, along with reserved shells, to the vegetable mixture.
- Add wine and water (or stock) and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Spoon the mixture into a blender and liquefy, adding the cream.
- Strain back into the saucepan, return it to the stove, add the peeled shrimp, and cook over medium heat until the shrimp are done.
- Place two shrimp on each plate, spoon the bisque over them, and place the finished fish on top. Garnish with black pepper and kohlrabi r mustard greens.
This recipe was originally featured on our sister site, Saltwater Sportsman, on November 16, 2016