Snapper Fillets with Saffron Rice


Saffron is the prized spice that lends curries their characteristic reddish hue, but it can also be used in other preparations with Far Eastern flavors, such as this easy fish dinner. When using saffron, the threads need to be either soaked in hot water or gently cooked in oil, as here, before being combined with other ingredients (such as the rice in this recipe). Sauteed fish fillets round out the meal.


  • 1/4 onion
  • olive oil (to taste)
  • cardamom
  • olive oil
  • 3 teaspoons saffron flower
  • 1 cup rice
  • 3 cups water
  • salt (to taste)
  • 2 snappers (small)
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 lime (zest)
  • chives (to taste)


  1. Heat the flavored olive oil in a saucepan, add the onion and saffron and saute until the saffron releases its color.
  2. If the mixture is too dry, add a bit of water to dilute it.
  3. Add the rice and let it fry for a bit.
  4. Add all of the water and salt to taste, cook until done.
  5. Cut the fish fillets. In a frying pan, add a drizzle of olive oil, the butter, and sprinkle with the zest of 1 lime.
  6. Add the fillets with the skin side down and let it cook until it browns as shown in the image, turn carefully and let it cook for about 3 minutes maximum on the other side.
  7. Serve with rice and garnish with chopped chives.
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