Strawberry Gulf Coast Grouper,

Brody Olive, in my opinion, is one of the top chefs along the Fl/Al Gulf Coast, and I have had several opportunities to judge his creations against many other competitors in food competitions over the last several years. He is a humble and talented man who created this dish for the Alabama Seafood Cook-off 2016. Currently, you will find him at Voyager’s Restaurant within the Perdido Beach Resort, a space that I highly recommend you enjoy if in the area.

View From Alabama Seafood Cook-off Judges Table
View from the Alabama Seafood Cook-off Judges Table at the Wharf in Gulf Shores

2 Strawberry Grouper filets (cut into 4oz portions)
1 tablespoon Togarashi (see recipe)
3 tablespoons oil (for searing)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 pound Rock Shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tablespoon Mirin rice wine
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 egg white
1 tablespoon ginger, finely chopped
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
2 whites of green onions
5 cups vegetable oil (for frying)
1/4 cup jicama, finely diced
8 slices French bread, thinly sliced with edges trimmed
1 teaspoon poppy seed
3 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon black sesame seed, toasted
3 teaspoons tangerine peel, dried
1 teaspoon nori, dried
3 teaspoons Szechuan peppercorns
2 teaspoons white sesame seed, toasted
2 cups field peas
4 spring onion bulbs
1 tablespoon olive oil
5 assorted baby radishes
1 sprig mint
Salt and pepper to taste

For the Grouper: Dust filets with togarashi, then heat on medium in a sauté pan with oil. Once oil is hot, sear fish on both sides, cut heat off, and cover to finish cooking.

For the Rock Shrimp: Using food processor, pulse the mirin, sesame oil, egg white, ginger ,and shrimp together. The mixture should form a course puree. Transfer to a mixing bowl and stir in remaining ingredients, then adjust with salt and pepper. Heat the vegetables in a sauce pan unitl 375 degrees on a deep fat thermometer. Spread the shrimp mixture onto sliced bread evenly to the edges. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Fry a couple pieces at a time shrimp side down first, 30-45 seconds until browned. Place on paper towel to drain.

For the Togarashi: Grind white sesame seeds & Szechuan peppercorns coarsely. Add nori and tangerine, then peel and grind. Mix remaining spices thoroughly.

For the vegetable mixture: Wash and clean peas and onion bulbs. Place peas in boiling water until tender, then strain and shock in ice bath. Split spring onions in half lengthwise, then brush with oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on a hot char grill to caramelize and add flavor. Chiffonade the mint and slice the radishes on a mandolin.

For the Miso Pepper Jelly Vinaigrette: Blend Miso Pepper Jelly, rice wine vinegar, lime juice, shallot, olive oil/canola oil, and salt and pepper to taste.

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