Tilapia Sauteed in a Brown Butter Sauce

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There really aren't many dishes that are quite as delicious as tilapia sauteed in a brown butter sauce. Find out how to prepare tilapia sauteed in a brown butter sauce with help from a hospitality professor at University of New Haven in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Coastal Flavors
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Video Transcript

Hi. I'm chef Trombetta from the University of New Haven in Connecticut. Today, we will be making sauteed tilapia with a brown butter, classically known as fish or tilapia a la maniere. So let's get started. We have our tilapia. You should always season your fish or meat item or anything for that matter with a little cracked pepper, a little course salt. We're going to dredge. Dredging means putting a fine coating of flour. And this is actually a very fine flour. It's called Wondra. And you can buy it in the stores. it's kind of like a clam fry. It just adheres to the fish much better. And so anyway, shake off the excess, do both pieces. And when we lay this in the pan the butter has to be brown. This is going to go very quickly. OK. Fish is like cooking eggs. It cooks quick. What's important here is that my pan is hot and we have to brown the butter because that's going to achieve color on the fish. The butter has to brown. You see how the butter starts to foam? Well when the foam subsides, the butter will start to brown and then it'll will burn noisette, brown butter. So you gotta watch the pan carefully, because it seems like it's taking forever. But when it happens it happens. See how the foam subsided? That butter is brown, shake off the excess and lay the skin side, skin side up. The good side which is the bone side down. Now we start to adjust our heat if need be. We want it to sizzle and we're going to flip it, going to flip it carefully.This is a pastry knife or a pastry spatula. But it's not only for pastry. It's a great fish turner. It's narrow, it's long. I could get underneath it without breaking the fish up. Cooking fish like this is like baking cookies. You can tell it needs to be turned when the sides of the fish are brown. Just like baking cookies. It looks like we're getting nice color and that's the purpose again of the brown butter and the Wondra flour. So you really shouldn't use oil for this because oil doesn't brown. OK. Get it, tilt the pan a little, help yourself along, flip it. You got nice color. That cooks quick. There's going to be residual cooking. So what we're going to do is we're going to transfer it and I could hold it in the oven, like a 200 degree oven if I want. And it won't stick because there's enough butter on there. I'm just parking this in an oven. It's 200 degrees and I don't want to cook it anymore. I timed it right, I didn't cook it that much on the second side to allow for some carry over cooking. So we're going to make a brown butter sauce or like I said in the beginning, a la maniere. So I want to set my fish, it's hot right out of the oven, on a plate and I'm just going to decorate it ready to go because when this, and I'm just putting a little bit of red pepper puree here and that's going to, I'm going to put the sauce on top of that puree. And it's just going to look nice underneath. It's a brown butter sauce and we're going to take more butter and we're going to put it in there, the existing pan. Make sure you didn't burn it. And as soon as that's ready, we're going to add our parsley, some chive, that's our brown butter. Look how quick that is. So you have brown butter sauce. It looks nice with the red pepper puree underneath it. It gives it a little bit of contrast and will provide a little extra flavor and it's lemon and brown butter. The brown butter's nutty. And I'm going to take a taste with the brown butter and herbs. Perfect. Nice good nutty butter flavor. That's the whole purpose of brown butter is to have that nutty flavor when you brown butter. So I'm Jeff Trombetta, chef of the hospitality program, University of New Haven in Connecticut.


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