Friday, March 12, 2010

Fishy Friday

Typically, you won't ever hear me talking about religion. It's one of those things that I try to respect, and by that I mean all religions. Whether you're Catholic, Protestant, Wiccan, Muslim, whatever...I'm going to go all Aretha Franklin on you and say I have R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

Anyway, I am Roman Catholic. I'm not the best Catholic out there, not by a long shot, but it's Lent. And I find it to be a personal challenge to try to adhere to no meat on Fridays, and to either give up something for these 40 days or do something positive daily. One year, instead of giving something up, I decided to be grateful for something every day. That was a good one. Whether it was someone holding a door for me, being able to walk, getting some sunshine...anyway.

I'm not terribly keen on all types of fish. I've expanded my horizons - I like mahi mahi, cod, tilapia, sole, and I luuuuuuurve shellfish. However, Matt can't really have shellfish so that's out here on Fridays. I haven't tried a salmon recipe I've liked, it's too fishy. If you have a good, easy salmon recipe that well, covers up the salmon taste, I'm all ears!

In case any of you out there are sometimes wondering about a new way to prepare fish, I'm happy to share a few of mine. Along the way, I'll share some other yummy recipes (fish and non-fish) here and there.

Today, it's all about the French Fish. Or, the "Fraaaauncch Feeeeesh." That's me, attempting a French accent. I'm not very good at it. Sorry.

This is my mom's recipe. Or her mom's recipe. I'm not really sure where it came from. But it's good.

What would this post be without pictures of the before and after?

Before I begin, I have to introduce you to my kitchen gurus. They are my advisors over all things culinary.
Yes, it's Hoops and Yoyo!

First, you take some fillets of whatever fish you choose. Here, I took Tilapia, because it was cheap. The rest of the ingredients are also in the picture below.
I really should get some sea salt instead. But I have to use up the regular salt first.

Take 1/2 c of French Dressing, 1/4 c lemon juice (I usually do more dressing and less lemon) and toss some salt in there. I can't remember how much, so I just chuck some in. Mix those ingredients in a bowl, pour on fish.
Look, it's like a smelly traffic cone! Or pumpkin, or....well, whatever's orange. It looks a little scary. Fear not, it's good.

Bake at 375 for 12-15 minutes, depending on the fish. Take it out of the oven and....


I forgot the best part!
Yes, the French Fried Onions. Hoops and Yoyo are doing some weird tantric yoga thing, they're so excited over this. It's really what makes the recipe. Otherwise it would just be neon orange fish. It's a good thing I have my advisors up there.

Anyway, sprinkle (or dump a lot, like I do) of the French Fried Onions over the fish, and pop back into the oven for another 5 minutes. What comes out is a delicious, crispy, delectable dinner, and so easy too!

Here's the finished product.
Aren't my plates pretty?

It should be noted that I usually serve waaaay more veggies than that, but we needed to go grocery shopping the next day and were using up what we had. And that was Matt's plate. That glob of pasta over there is larger than my head.

This was last Friday. Tonight, it's tortellini. Buitoni tortellini. With sauce from a jar. And lots of wine. Not in the tortellini. Mmmm, I do love lazy Fridays.

And what did I give up this year, you ask? Good question. How for myself! Oooh yes, that's a good one, because it's true! I've shopped for the horses, cats, etc., but not for me. I'm sticking with that one.


JayZ said...

You are a better Catholic than me...I gave up on the no meat on Fridays. But I figure since I never got my ashes it's not really Lent for me, right? ;-)

Have you tried my pesto and salmon recipe? John likes it because it covers the salmon taste (I love salmon so I'll take it plain).

Here's the can make your own pesto or buy it. I've done it both ways.
Perfect Pesto
3 cups chopped fresh basil
4 tbsp (or more) of extra virgin olive oil
1/2 pine nuts
2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
4 garlic cloves, minced (I used my garlic press)

Place the basil in a food processor. Pour in about 1 tbsp of oil, and blend basil into a paste. Gradually add pine nuts, parmesan, garlic and remaining oil. Taste regularly, add more olive oil if not the right consistency. Continue to blend until smooth.

Foil-Baked Salmon with Pesto
2 salmon filets
2 tsp. olive oil
4 tsp. pesto

Preheat oven to 450 degrees and place baking sheet in oven to heat. Use two pieces of foil, big enough to wrap around salmon with some overlap. Put one piece on top of the other and pour 2 tsp. olive oil in the center of top piece. Lay salmon on top and spread each piece with pesto. Wrap salmon in foil, doubling over the seam a couple times. Place salmon foil packet on heated baking sheet and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from over and let sit 2-3 minutes. Delicious and easy!

Catherine said...

KC, love your recipe today (and the pictures - I'm very visual when it comes to cooking). I don't know how to cook, but I'm going to try this recipe because I want to incorporate more fish into my diet (and fewer cute cows, if you know what I mean). Also, excellent "plating." If you were on Iron Chef, I'd give you top marks!

JayZ, I'm going to try your salmon recipe too! Looks yummy.

Regarding Salmon, dumping a ton of melted butter on it does wonders for the flavor by the way. It also clogs the arteries, but it's good and buries the taste. You'd swear you were eating lobster!

Cynthia D said...

I can't wait to try the fish. If you want to hide the taste of anything, use the butter like Cat said and add a ton of fresh garlic. And mince up some fresh flat leaf parsley for color. I like the pics of your kitchen crew!

Kim said...

KC - I was totally raised Catholic but as an adult I do not adhere to all the bells and whistles as some Catholics do. We are invited to an Easter family dinner and I do hope we show up. LOL!

Joe and I are avid fish eaters of most kind. A bushel of raw clams will send us in a frenzy because we will eat the entire bushel within an hour. If you want to get the fishyness out of any fish - put it in a bowl, just enough water to cover it and douse it with lemon juice. Real lemons. Let it soak for about 10 minutes. Rinse and dry off and wallah. That does the trick. We like the original taste of salmon but I do this with tuna as it can be too fishy for me. Now for the recipe:

Salmon Provencal

1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
1 (10 ounce) box mushrooms sliced
2 (14 1/2 ounce) cans diced tomatoes, drained
4 (6 ounce) salmon filets
1 1/2 cups vermouth
1/2 tsp tarragon
1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
2 T drained capers (optional)
2 T parsley, chopped

1- Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add the fennel and cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until softened. Add the mushrooms and tomatoes and cook another 5 minutes. Remove mixture from heat and set aside.
2- Meanwhile, place the salmon in a 2-inch deep skillet. Pour the vermouth over the fish, then add the tarragon. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer and cook 10 minutes, or until the fish is cooked to the desired degree of doneness. Transfer the salmon to a plate and keep warm. Scoop out 1/2 cup of poaching liquid and add to the tomatoes. Sire in the olives and capers and bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes.
3- Place a piece of salmon on each plate and spoon the sauce over it. Sprinkle with parsley and serve. (If you want to rewarm the salmon, return it to the sauce for 1 minute, then move to place and garnish.) 4 servings.

KC - this is my first time on your blog and Oh, did I mention how much I love your site. LOVE IT!!!!!! Hope you guys like the recipe - hubby Joe and I used to have a restaurant in Eastern Long Island and we served this. Joe's a great cook and I think I am pretty good myself. See you next week honey!

Aislinn said...

KC, I love the photos! So, so funny. I love your kitchen buddies. They're little pranksters, aren't they.

I will try some of these fish recipes. I love all kinds of fish, with cod being my favorite. I like to bake my fish in aluminum foil, smothered in lemon, olive oil, and capers. Moist and delish.

Suz said...

Hey Kace! I'm getting all caught up on your blog...

Pssstt...we make a salmon recipe pretty close to your french fish. Mariande in a 50/50 mix of french and italian (that's EYEtalian 'round these parts) for a day or overnight and cook it on the grill. It gets nice and sweet on the grill...but I will be the first to admit that salmon is rather fishy and it's hard to cover up! Doesn't bother me though.

I made Tilapia this past Friday. I marinaded it in tequila, lime juice and slices, cilantro, s/p, green onion and a sploosh of olive oil. Pan fry. Delish.

Sapphire said...

Ok, Mike does a poached salmon to die!

Melt butter, lay down lemon slices, thyme or tarragon or basil (any aromatic), white wine (chardonnay - he used champagne once, yum) and just let the fish poach over that, it takes on the flavor of the aromatic but really delicately. Love it!.

I tried to get you the recipe but this is what I got, "What recipe? I just made it up as I went." So there ya go, poached salmon on the fly.