TriathlEats: Red Snapper With Haricots Verts

This ideal pre-race dish is packed with heart-healthy omega-3s, nutritious greens and lots of flavor.

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This ideal pre-race dish is packed with heart-healthy omega-3s, nutritious greens and lots of flavor.


For pomegranate sauce
1 cup smooth Dijon mustard
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
½ cup wine vinegar
1 cup pomegranate seeds

For snapper
5 7-ounce filets red snapper, scaled with skin
½ T butter
1 cup cauliflower florets
4 cups haricots verts (or other green beans)
¼ cup shallots, diced
¼ cup almonds, crushed or sliced
¼ cup Castelvetrano olives (an Italian green variety), sliced and pitted
Parsley or chervil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Olive oil


To make the pomegranate sauce, combine Dijon mustard and vinegar in a food processor. While running, slowly pour in the olive oil. Once fully incorporated and creamy, place in a separate bowl and fold in the pomegranate seeds. To prepare the snapper, first toss the cauliflower and almonds in 1 tablespoon olive oil and place in a covered baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees F for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Meanwhile, prepare a sauté pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Place over high heat, then place the fish in, skin side down. Add butter as the filets cook. Once the skin is brown, flip the fish and lower the heat. Continue to cook until done. Remove the filets and set aside. Wipe out the sauté pan, and add 1 tablespoon olive oil along with shallots, cooking until they are tender. Add haricots verts until cooked. Add the reserved cauliflower and cook until warmed. To plate, place the pomegranate sauce on the plate, then add vegetables and layer with filets of snapper. Garnish with olives, fresh herbs and pepper.

Notes from the athlete
Restaurant owner and triathlete Steven Kristel likes to eat this dish the night before a sprint- or Olympic-distance race. “It’s light and nourishing, which is best for short races,” he says. “I function best with protein and vegetables, with a few carbs thrown in.” The recipe was written by chef Alex Pirani of Bo’s Kitchen and Bar Room, a restaurant Kristel co-owns, in Manhattan.

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Meet the triathlete-restaurateur

New Yorker Steven Kristel hadn’t been planning to go into the restaurant business after a successful 30-year career in manufacturing. But when his daughter went to culinary school, he was looking for a change of pace. So he teamed up with relative and experienced chef Todd Mitgang to open South Edison, a restaurant featuring local seafood and seasonal produce, in the beach town of Montauk, N.Y. “At the time, it was a very sleepy town, and in need of a restaurant—or two or three,” Long Island resident Kristel says. Success at South Edison led to the pair opening a second restaurant, Bo’s Kitchen and Bar Room, serving New Orleans-inspired cuisine, in Manhattan. Co-owning two restaurants allows Kristel, who’s been racing triathlon for more than 10 years, to spend his mornings training before going into the restaurant. Triathlon has become a family affair: He started racing tris because his wife did, and now his daughter competes as well. Bo’s serves as the packet pick-up location for city dwellers racing the Montauk Triathlon, and it’s also an official sponsor of the local Tobay Triathlon. Now in his 60s, Kristel sticks to sprint- and Olympic-distance races. “At this point, the goal is just to stay fit,” he says, “and the races are a reason to train.”

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