Fish & Seafood/ Jamaican & Caribbean

Jamaican Escovitch Fish

Jamaican Escovitch Fish is a delicious and flavourful fried fish recipe. It features perfectly seasoned fish, fried until golden and crispy, topped with a beautiful spicy medley of pickled vegetables. Serve with Jamaican Fried Dumpling, festival or bammy for lunch, dinner or anytime throughout the day!

Jamaican Escovitch Fish

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Jamaican Escovitch Fish is a delicious and flavourful fried fish recipe. It features perfectly seasoned fish, fried until golden and crispy, topped with a beautiful spicy medley of pickled vegetables. Serve with Jamaican Fried Dumpling, festival or bammy for lunch, dinner or anytime throughout the day!

Growing up, I despised almost 90% of the fish dishes that crossed by eyes. However, I always seemed to make an exception when my mum made Jamaican Escovitch Fish. This was especially true during the holidays and on Good Friday! To this day, it’s still an absolute fave of mine. In this recipe, the fish is seasoned, fried, and marinated under a beautiful mix of vegetables cooked in a vinegar-based dressing.

Jamaican Escovitch Fish

What Type of Fish to Use

Traditionally, boneless snapper, whole snapper, sliced kingfish or goatfish is used. Goatfish, may be difficult to find depending on where you live. You can use whatever fish you prefer although, firmer bodied fish are ideal.

Prepare a Day Ahead & Marinate

This dish is best served when you allow the flavours of the pickled vegetables to marinate into the flesh of the fish overnight. I’m personally advocating that you make this dish one day ahead; your tastebuds will thank you!

Infuse Oil With Scotch Bonnet Pepper

Before frying fish, add a scotch bonnet pepper to the pot, this adds a boost of flavour to the oil which the fish will absorb.

Jamaican Escovitch Fish

Pairs well with Bammy, Fried Dumpling, Festival, and Hard Dough Bread

Jamaican Escovitch Fish Tips

  • Do not over fry your fish. Once the fish is cooked through (internal temp of 145° F) and has turned golden and crispy, carefully remove the fish from the oil and drain on a wire rack.
  • Do not flip your fish until it can freely move in the pan; this will ensure it stays whole and intact.
  • This fish is not meant to have “sauce”. Any liquid from the pickled vegetables should all be soaked up by the fish once poured on top.
Jamaican Escovitch Fish with Jamaican Fried Dumpling

What to Eat with Jamaican Escovitch Fish

Jamaican Fried Dumpling & Jamaican Saltfish Fritters (Stamp & Go) 

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Jamaican Escovitch Fish

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Jamaican & Caribbean // Fish & Seafood Jamaican // Caribbean
By Taneisha Morris Serves: 2
Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 30 minutes Total Time: 45 minutes

Jamaican Escovitch Fish is a delicious and flavourful fried fish recipe. It features perfectly seasoned fish, fried until golden and crispy, topped with a beautiful spicy medley of pickled vegetables. Serve with Jamaican Fried Dumpling, festival or bammy for lunch, dinner or anytime throughout the day!

Ingredients

  • Fish Seasoning
  • 2-3 Medium Whole Snapper Fish
  • Juice of ½ Lemon
  • 1 Scotch Bonnet Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Green Seasoning, optional
  • 1 tsp All-Purpose Seasoning or Seasoning Salt
  • 1 tsp Fresh Cracked Black Pepper
  • Salt, to taste
  • Cooking Oil
  • Escovitch Dressing
  • ½ Scotch Bonnet Pepper, seeds removed and sliced
  • ¼ Chayote (Cho Cho), julienned
  • ½ Carrot, julienned
  • ½ Bell Pepper, julienned any 2 colours
  • 1 Small Onion, sliced
  • ¼ cup White Vinegar
  • 6-7 Whole Pimento Seeds
  • ½ tbsp Granulated White Sugar
  • ¼ tsp Salt, more or less to taste
  • 1 tsp Oil, from pot used to fry fish

Instructions

Season Fish

1

Prepare your fish (clean/scale); pat dry. On one side of the fish, make 2 slits (ensuring not to cut the fish in half). Season with green seasoning, all purpose or seasoning salt, and black pepper. Marinate overnight or a few hours ahead, and refrigerate - ensure you get the seasoning in-between the slits.

2

Using a large, non-stick skillet, heat cooking oil and scotch bonnet pepper on high heat. Fry fish for about 5 minutes on each side. Do not flip until it can freely move (a crisp exterior should have formed on the fish).

3

Remove fish from oil and place on wire rack to drain excess oil; set aside.

Escovitch Dressing

4

Cut and slice your vegetables and set aside.

5

In a medium sized saucepan, add scotch bonnet, chayote, carrot, bell peppers, onions, vinegar, pimento, oil, sugar and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat then allow to simmer for about 3 minutes or until liquid is dissolved.

6

Transfer fish into a dish with a lid. Pour and spoon the dressing on top of the fish then cover with a lid. Allow to marinate overnight, and serve the next day.

Notes

Do not flip your fish until it can freely move in the pan; this will ensure it stays whole and intact.

Jamaican Escovitch Fish

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