Pan-Seared Tilapia with Chili-Lime Butter

Pan-Seared Tilapia with Chili-Lime Butter

Photo: Jennifer Causey Styling: Lindsey Lower

From Gourmet July 2003. Source: Epicurious.com, which rates it 3.5 out of 4 forks.

Ingredients

For the Chili Lime Butter

  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated fresh lime zest
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh Thai or serrano chile (preferably red), including seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the fish

  • 6 (5- to 6-oz) pieces skinless tilapia fillet or farm-raised striped bass fillets with skin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Preparation

Make chile lime butter:

Stir together butter, shallot, zest, lime juice, chile, and salt in a bowl.

Prepare fish:

If using striped bass, score skin in 3 or 4 places with a thin sharp knife to prevent fish from curling (do not cut through flesh). Pat fish dry and sprinkle with salt. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until just smoking, then sauté 3 pieces of fish, turning over once with a spatul class='bullets'a, until golden and just cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes, and transfer to a plate. Sauté remaining fish in remaining tablespoon oil in same manner.

Serve each piece of fish with a dollop of chile lime butter.

Cooks' note:
Chile lime butter can be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. Bring to room temperature before using.