The Standout Jamaican Dish Nyesha Arrington Loves - Exclusive

If you needed a sign to travel to your dream destination, this is it. The best way to try out a country's cuisine is to experience it firsthand, like cheesy pasta in Rome or decadent crêpes in Paris. In Nyesha Arrington's case, she's fantasizing about a red snapper dish in Jamaica. The "Next Level Chef" judge is known for finding sustainable food alternatives, such as using rotisserie chicken bones for a hearty chicken stock or salmon skin for a meal garnish.

Arrington's success has allowed her to visit places all over the globe, like Bali and Morocco, to sample local eateries and fresh produce. During an exclusive interview with Tasting Table, Nyesha Arrington divulged details on her standout food memory from her most recent trip to Jamaica. "My god, I never wanted to leave Jamaica," the chef said. "I literally ate snapper every single day, red snapper, because true red snapper is hard to find," Arrington added.

Red snapper is a popular white fish

Red snapper can be found along the eastern coasts of northern South America, Central America, and North America. As Nyesha Arrington reminisced about her Jamaica trip, she explained, "A lot of people will call rockfish red snapper, or [call] different fish [red snapper], because it's the same flesh color, but true freaking red snapper is incredible." The "Top Chef" contestant added that she "watched the guys pluck it out of the ocean" before cheffing it up as a meal later.

Red snapper is a delicate fish that has a mild but sweet flavor and can be grilled, broiled, or baked — you can even check out our panko-crusted red snapper recipe for a dinner idea. The white fish is likened to tilapia or grouper because all three are very versatile. At one point, red snapper was seriously overfished, causing a low population, but its numbers have increased since the late 1980s, and it is currently a very common catch among commercial fisheries. The protein pairs best with standard sides — like grilled asparagus, scalloped potatoes, or a grilled corn salad — depending on your tastebuds, of course.

Season 2 of "Next Level Chef" airs on Fox on Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET. For more information about the Sun Wine & Food Fest, visit Mohegan Sun's website. And keep up with Nyesha Arrington's latest projects on her Instagram page.