Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Really Good Tilapia

It has been forever...I am sure if there was anyone reading this (which is doubtful), you have stopped by now because it has been over a year since my last post. Eek. Well I finished grad school, moved, bought a house, and got a "big kid" job in the mean time. And now I am ready to start this up again :)
And what better way to come back that a Fabulous Tilapia recipe. For awhile me and my hubby were eating fish one night a week. In theory it is good for you and I liked it because fish cooks up super fast and usually feels like a fancy meal. So when I got an email from Real Simple (the magazine) about this recipe. I had to try it. Only a few problems...where do you get pacific cod? (sounds expensive)...mixed olives? (also sounds expensive)...lemon zest? (too much work). So I decided to take a chance and mix it up. The recipe said that you could use another white fish, so I chose Tilapia, mainly because Publix usually has it on sale and it is fairly inexpensive (the 4 filets I just bought were less than a 1lb total, and the not on sale price is $6.99 a lb at Publix...I think that is pretty cheap for fish). I substituted green olives for the mixed olives and I just used lemon concentrate instead of lemon zest, because I had it on had and it didn't involve zesting something before I could eat dinner ;)

So, here is my new modified recipe:
White cooking wine
Red Pepper Flakes (optional)
Green Olives (optional)
Olive oil
Lemon Concentrate
Salt and Pepper
2 Tilapia Filets (there are only 2 of us, multiply recipe as needed)


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and find ingredients and gather them up.
2. Put Tilapia filets in a baking dish. If someone doesn't like olives (like my hubby) or you just want it to be cute, put each fish filet separate small baking dishes.
**In my experience there usually aren't any bones in the Tilapia, but then as I was eating the fish tonight I came across one small pin bone. Here is a general tip from the original recipe: "Many fish fillets have small pin bones in them, which can pose a choking hazard. Before cooking, gently run your fingers along the fillets, locate any bones, and pull them out with tweezers. "**
3. Pour enough white wine to cover half of the fish.
4. Pour 1/2 tablespoon lemon concentrate on each fish filet.
5. Drizzle olive oil on each filet.
6. Sprinkle red pepper flakes and put desired amount of olives in baking dish (I love olives, so mine has a ton.., my hubby doesn't so his has none).
7. Use a spoon to mix up liquid and pour over fish.
8. Put fish in the oven for about 20 minutes. You will know it is done when it is white all the way through and is flaky when you cut into it.
I like to serve this dish with couscous. If you have never tried couscous then you need to go try it now. It is super easy and tastes great (kinda like rice). This type I have here all you have to do is boil water/olive oil/& the seasonings, then once that is boiling you take it off the heat and pour in the couscous. Then all you have to do is let it sit covered (not on the heat) for 5 minutes and then fluff it and serve.
I personally like to eat my fish out of the dish and enjoy all the juices, but my husband usually likes to take his out of the dish and eat it without all the juices...so to each their own. I like this recipe because it is easy to make and adapt. For example, my in laws came to town and I wanted to make this, but my sister in law doesn't like fish of any kind. So I did the same process but with chicken. Now, I did cook it longer (chicken doesn't cook as fast as fish) but the flavors were still good.
So, enjoy your fish, and I will try to post again before another year has past ;)

(Warning: If you are new to cooking fish, especially Tilapia, try and buy the Tilapia within a couple days of when you are going to make it. I would definitely NOT buy the fish Sunday to eat on Friday if it was going to sit in the fridge that whole time (in the freezer would be fine, but then you have to remember to defrost it). Good general rule of thumb is if you can "smell" it then it needs to be pitched. )

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

TWD - Caramel Crunch Bars

For this week, Whitney of What's left on the table? chose Caramel Crunch bars. Please see her website or pages 112-113 of Baking from my Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan (great book you should buy it if you don't already have it!). I made these Sunday and they were a big hit with my church's small group and my officemates. These are super easy to whip up and are phenomenal. I really liked that the caramel aspect of the bar was just Heath toffee bits. I am not a big caramel fan, but I do enjoy Heath toffee bits. Time is short this week, but I hope you enjoy the photos I took of the process. I think I followed everything to the letter this week, except that I didn't have the 9 total ounces of bittersweet chocolate I needed, but I did have a lot of unsweetened chocolate and semisweet chocolate. So I guesstimated...it isn't a one to one ratio, but bittersweet is somewhere in between unsweetened and semi sweet, so I used a mix :)

Next week: "Chocolate Armagnac Cake - The Cake That Got Me Fired"... I am interested in the story behind this cake ;)