THE BLUE SNAPPER breaded snapper + blue cheese + brown tartar

Middle-class poor is when you haven't earned the things you think you deserve, but work out affording them anyway. Here's a sandwich that was straight up, out of my daily food budget, and FUCK, it was worth it.

Rant to follow, holler if you #relate:
"AND THIS IS WHY WE CAN'T HAVE NICE THINGS!" ...is something that got said surprisingly a lot in some of my former households, and apartments with my friends through our early and mid 20s. Whether it was just being too drunk to take care of our stuff, or too drunk not to loose it, throwing hazardously crowded parties, or being too hungover to... I'm sure there was more to it than that. Cats? Was it... no, we didn't have cats. ANYWAY. I'm at a point now in life, where I'm realizing I CAN have nice things. I'm an "adult" now (sort of)... I can, have nice things. I just... don't really?
I guess I'm not that much of an adult. I only sort of have a job. Definitely nothing secure and meaningful. My furniture situation is getting slightly more permanent, but never the relationships. I graduated from stacking milk crates everywhere to hunting mid-century tapered leg teak pieces on Craigslist/the streets, and getting way excited about scoring some ratty kilim rugs, and high end wool coats at thrift shops. So I'm at the point where I'm recognizing I actually do want nice things. But the kick in the teeth is the realization I'm still early 20s poor. I've made some EXCELLENT life choices over the years...

SO many ellipses. You can tell I'm feeling extended about this entry. So the point is, I still think in terms of freelance tutoring, hitchhiking, couchsurfing, socialist era frugality, so that any money I spend, can go towards traveling, and shows. Lately, I've been dropping some serious cash on cheese for the blog. Something I wouldn't eat otherwise. I get my weekly meat intake when I visit les parents, because my dad is the best at cooking, and I really don't feel like I need to buy it at home. And when I do, it has to be the good shit. The good, organic, free range, ethical shit. So it was a huge hurdle for me to be standing at the fishmonger's and order some nice-ass fish, just because I fucking felt like it.

Here's what's in it:
bread (Queen St Gluten Free Bakery white bean and millet seed, from Grain, Curd & Bean)
breaded wild snapper filet (with Bob's Red Mill gluten free all purpose flour)
Blue Haze blue cheese (from The Hogtown Cure)
green onion
organic tamari sauce
organic ketchup
maple syrup
organic mayo
organic butter
Himalayan salt

Spread the mayo with horseradish on one piece of bread, crumble the blue cheese on the other. I HIGHLY recommend you try this with garlic and herb Boursin, it's got more tang, and less smoke than the blue pictured here.

I took the thick end of a snapper filet, coated it in egg white, then breaded it with flour. Then fried in coconut oil, in a pan on medium-high for 2 minutes per side. Here's how it turned out:

I honestly usually suck at cooking stuff like this. I'm ok for ideas, pretty sloppy with execution, but this is pretty nice for a first try.

Then I simmered the garlic in butter, quickly so as to keep its bite. After about a minute or so, I added the tamari, ketchup, and maple syrup to the pan, and let it reduce until thick. Try to get it mostly over the fish so it gets absorbed by the breading.

Mesclun. The fancy person lettuce, 'cause this is an all the way post.

Slivered green onions for extra kick.

Alright, like, yay, joy. Looks good, right?

And it totally was! God damn. I love eating animals.

With carefully curated sauces.

Side note, I always cook fish to medium-rare. You want it at least warm in the middle, but not cooked through and dry. 

Ughhhhh. Yess. I wish I could have eaten two of them.

Thanks for looking guys.

xxxxx Emily


  1. Thanks for the post from a fellow sandwich lover. I am definitely going to have to try this. I love the idea of using horseradish, and I'm sure it works together with the fish very well. I am curious where you can get blue snapper fillets like that. I want to make this for dinner tonight, so I appreciate the idea.

    Wayne. | Hams Shop

    1. Hey Wayne, thanks for the comment! I got a snapper fillet from my local fish monger. I cut it in half ('cause it was huge), and used the thick part for the sandwich. I dipped it in one egg (mixed), and then dipped it in flour (I use the gluten-free mix mentioned above). I fried it for a few minutes per side on medium-high, in lots of butter. I hope that helps? Always good to meet fellow sandwich lovers.