Grilled Red Snapper With Spicy Chile-Tomato Sauce

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Grilled Red Snapper with a spicy chile/tomato sauce.  In Spanish the recipe name is Huachinango a la Talla - Huachinango is the red snapper fish.  The fish is first rubbed with a mixture of mayonnaise, lime, butter and salt. The Chile-Tomato sauce uses dried chiles, Mexican oregano, cumin, marjoram, tomatoes and garlic.
Recipe By: Mexico The Beautiful Cookbook
  • Prep20 min |
  • Total1hr 5min |
  • Serves 4


    • 5 lbs red snapper (talapia)
  • Fish Rub:
    • 5 tablespoons mayonnaise
    • 2 tablespoons lime juice (or lemon)
    • 1 tablespoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
    • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • Sauce:
    • 10 chiles guajillos, seeds and membranes removed
    • 5 chiles anchos, seeds and membranes removed
    • 4 tomatoes, peeled and seeded
    • 1 cup water
    • 4 cloves garlic
    • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
    • 3 whole cloves
    • 1/3 onion
    • 1/2 tsp each dried oregano, thyme, and marjoram
    • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
    • 2 tablespoons butter
    • 2 tablespoons oil
    • salt and freshly ground pepper


*The author suggests having the fish market clean and "butterfly" the fish for you.  The gills and intestines should be removed, leave the scales on.  Rinse and pat dry.

Combine all the rub ingredients, rub fish with mixture and marinate at room temp 20 minutes.

Prepare the sauce - soak chiles in hot water, covered for 10 minutes,  drain, transfer to blender and puree with water, tomatoes, garlic, vinegar, cloves, onion, oregano,
thyme, marjoram, and cumin until smooth

Heat the butter and oil in a small saucepan and add the pureed chiles.  When the puree comes to a boil, lower the heat and cook for 20 minutes or until the sauce thickens.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Let cook to room temperature.

Preheat an outdoor grill and lightly grease the rack.  Position the rack about 8" over the coals.  Place the opened fish, scales down, on the rack and grill for 15-20 minutes, basting regularly with the sauce.  Turn the fish over, baste with melted butter and grill for 10-15 minutes or until the fish is cooked.
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