Pecan Crusted Surf & Turf with Thyme Squash and Garlic Herb Grits

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Pecan Crusted Surf & Turf with Thyme Squash and Garlic Herb Grits

I created this pecan crusted surf & turf recipe after doing an IG live for my friends at Colorcomm. The goal was to do a “Chopped” style show with a pantry cooking theme. I let the audience pick 4 ingredients from my fridge and pantry.
As they say, the rest is history. This is what I was able to come up with on the spot and make it in less than 40 minutes.

Pecan Crusted Surf & Turf

Pecan Surf and Turf recipe Cooking Tips:

Feel free to use any oil you may have on hand. 5-minute grits, polenta or regular grits will work for this recipe. Only use Italian parsley for cooking it’s the best, curly head parsley is bland and only used for garnishing food trays. You can use any cheese you like if you cannot find the boursin. Feel free to use zucchini in place of the yellow neck squash or do a 50/50 blend. I originally made this recipe with redfish which has a snapper flavor. Snapper or trout would be perfect but use any fish that you can find fresh in your area.

Can you make ahead?

Fridge: I recommend only making the lemon-orange sauce a day in advance. However, prepping all of your ingredients early or a day in advance will help with the many steps. 

Reheating: The only thing items that you cannot pop in the oven is the grits and lemon-orange sauce.

Surf  & Turf and Thyme Squash: Pop in a 350-degree oven for 10-15 minutes.

Grits: Bring a small amount of water or milk to a boil and stir in grits, cook until hot. *A 1/4 cup of liquid will be enough for 2 servings of grits.

Lemon-Orange Sauce: Serve at room temperature.

Recipe Video:

Substitution Options:

You can serve this with steak too. If you cannot find boursin cheese, try using your favorite cheese.

Add zucchini to your thyme squash for a squash medley. You can use your favorite vegetable as a substitute for the thyme squash.

You can use chicken breast in place of chicken thighs.

what to serve with Surf & Turf?

Meal Ideas:

Recipe:

Pecan Crusted Surf & Turf
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Pecan Crusted Surf & Turf with Thyme Squash and Garlic Herb Grits

Tips for success: Feel free to use any oil you may have on hand. 5-minute grits, polenta or regular grits will work for this recipe. Only use Italian parsley for cooking it’s the best, curly head parsley is bland and only used for garnishing food trays. You can use any cheese you like if you cannot find the boursin. Feel free to use zucchini in place of the yellow neck squash or do a 50/50 blend. I originally made this recipe with redfish which has a snapper flavor. Snapper or trout would be perfect but use any fish that you can find fresh in your area.
Course Main Course
Cuisine African, American, Creole, Southern
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4 persons

Ingredients

Garlic Herb Grits:

  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 2 shallots chopped fine
  • 4 cloves garlic chopped fine
  • 2 ¼ cups water
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup grits
  • 2 oz. boursin garlic herb cheese

Surf & Turf:

  • 4 chicken thighs boneless skinless chopped medium
  • 4 6 oz. fish filets
  • 1 ½ tablespoons creole seasoning
  • ½ bunch Italian parsley leaves only
  • 6 green onions chopped medium
  • 8 cloves garlic smashed
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • ¾ cup unbleached flour

Thyme Squash:

  • 4 yellow neck squash sliced medium
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dry thyme
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil

Lemon-Orange Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 2 shallots chopped fine
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 sprigs Italian parsley chopped fine

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven, turn on the heat to medium, in a large pot add the avocado oil and shallots, cook for 1 minute, stir once or twice, add the garlic, stir once or twice, add the water, heavy cream, butter, kosher salt, black pepper and bring to a boil. Once liquid is boiling stir in the grits and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the heat to low, cook for 15 minutes, stir once or twice doing cooking, add the boursin, stir, cover and cut the heat off. Taste and adjust seasoning.
  • In a food processor add the Italian parsley, green onions, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, kosher salt, black pepper and avocado oil, blitz on high for 1-2 minutes until a paste forms. Season fish evenly on both sides with remaining creole seasoning, (save 2 teaspoons) add 1 tablespoon of herb paste to each side of the fish. Press ¼ cup of pecans on the skin side of the fish. In a medium bowl or platter add the flour and 2 teaspoons creole seasoning, stir together.
  • In a large bowl add the squash, kosher salt, black pepper, granulated garlic, thyme and 1 tablespoon avocado oil, toss to combine.
  • In a large bowl add the chicken thighs, ½ tablespoon creole seasoning and 1 tablespoon avocado oil, toss to combine. Turn on the heat to medium-high, in a large heavy bottom skillet, add the chicken and cook for 6 minutes while constantly stirring. Place chicken in a bowl, reduce heat to medium.
  • In the same skillet you cooked the chicken, add 1 tablespoon of avocado oil, add squash and cook for 5 minutes, constantly stirring. Transfer to a platter.
  • Turn on the heat to medium-high, in a large heavy bottom skillet, add 2 tablespoons avocado oil and 1 ½ tablespoons butter. Dredge fish in flour, shake off access flour and place the skin side in the skillet, cook for 2 minutes, flip over and cook for 1 minute, transfer to a foiled lined baking sheet, repeat with next two filets of fish, then pop in the oven for 6 minutes.
  • While fish is in the oven, make your lemon-orange sauce. Turn the heat to medium, in a medium skillet, add the avocado oil and shallots, stir a few times, cook for 1 minute. Add the chicken, orange juice and the lemon juice, bring to a boil and cook until liquid forms a glaze, about 3-5 minutes. Add the kosher salt, unsalted butter and Italian parsley, remove from the heat and shake skillet back and forth until butter has melted.
  • To serve add grits, squash, fish evenly among 4 plates and pour lemon-orange chicken sauce evenly over fish.

Notes

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

If you make this recipe, make sure to take a picture and share it on Instagram or Facebook and tag me @kennethtemple so we all can see that deliciousness!

1 thought on “Pecan Crusted Surf & Turf with Thyme Squash and Garlic Herb Grits”

  1. I really enjoyed your personality, professionalism, great energy. You kept us engaged and focused on what was going to happen next
    Had my mouth savoring! The final presentation Oh my God! Look at all that deliciousness

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