Growing up in St. Lucia, I ate a lot of seafood like salt fish and flying fish with parsley sauce. This dish really takes me back home. The fish, coconut milk, okra and yucca all come together to create a really flavorful dish that, to me, represents the Caribbean and everything I love about the region's cuisine.
For the Fish
- 1/2 to 3/4 pound grouper, sliced into 2-inch strips
- 6 lemons, zested
- Olive oil, for marinating
- 2 pounds spinach
- 2 cups okra rounds
- 1 Scotch bonnet pepper (Caribbean red pepper)
- 3 onions, sliced
- 1 cup yucca, peeled and diced
- 4 cups scallions, sliced
- 2 (14-ounce) cans coconut milk
- 3 (1-quart) containers seafood or shellfish stock
- 2 cups pearl barley, cooked until tender
- Cilantro, to garnish
1. Marinate the fish for one hour in the citrus zest and enough olive oil to cover the fish. After marinating, sauté the marinated grouper in a large sauce pot heated to medium-high heat with a bit of olive oil until fish cooked through. Reserve and keep warm.
2. Sauté the onions, okra, Scotch bonnet, yucca, scallions and sweat out the veggies for about 5 to 10 minutes. Add the spinach and sweat until tender. Then add the fish stock and coconut milk and puree, using a handheld mixer, until smooth.
3. To serve, take eight to 10 soup bowls and distribute sliced grouper evenly. Pour the warm soup on top of the fish. Garnish each dish with cilantro.