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Chefs at Home: Red Drum with Roasted Root Vegetables, Carrot Puree, and Chermoula

Serves: 2-4
Prep Time: 45 min
Cook Time: 40-45 min
Difficulty: Moderate

Red drum from Mauritius is a lot like striped bass - firm and meaty with a delicious skin that gets nice and crispy when seared. Make the carrot puree and chermoula ahead of time to streamline prep for this flavorful red drum dish.  




For the Carrot Puree

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into ¼-inch pieces
  • 3 garlic gloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 small onion, peeled and minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For the chermoula:

  • ¼ cup mint leaves
  • ¼ cup parsley, with stems
  • ½ cup cilantro. with stems
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 2 tablespoons coriander
  • 2 tablespoons cardamom
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • Zest and juice of two limes
  • 2 cups of olive oil

For the roasted root vegetables

  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 small turnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 rosemary sprigs, leaves stripped from stems and chopped
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil

For the red drum:

  • 3 red drum filets
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil


    Carrot puree


    Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat and when it shimmers, add the remaining ingredients. Reduce heat to medium low and gently cook the vegetables until the carrot starts to brighten in color and there is steam rising from the pit.


    Cover vegetables with water cook till carrots are cooked through, about 10 minutes. Puree with a stick blender or food processor. Season with salt to your taste. Set aside.



    Add all ingredients besides the olive oil in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to break up the herbs. With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil until the mixture resembles a pesto or thick dressing. Taste and adjust seasoning.

    Roasted root vegetables


    Heat the oven to 425°F.


    Toss the carrots and turnips in a medium bowl with the chili flakes, cumin, cinnamon, and rosemary. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a sheet pan and roast in the oven for about 15 minutes, more if you like the vegetables darkly caramelized.


    Red drum


    While the vegetables are cooking, pat fish dry and season on a plate with salt and pepper on both sides.


    Heat olive oil in a medium oven-safe skillet until smoking. Place fish skin side down in oil. Push down with spatula until you don’t feel any bubbles.


    When the vegetables are ready, remove from oven and place on back of stove to keep warm.


    Increase oven temp to 450°F, and place fish (in the skillet) in oven for 5 minutes. Remove and flip fish. Fish should be medium rare to medium.

    To serve


    Pull from pan on to a plate; the skin should be crispy. Serve each filet with some roasted vegetables, carrot puree, and chermoula.