Quick and Tasty – Fried Fish

Last week I made our favorite fish dish, Tilapia with Strawberry and Avocado Salsa, and had two big pieces of tilapia left over. Two nights later, I was feeling cranky and hungry so I just fried those suckers up. Since I’m always broiling and roasting, sautéing and grilling, I forgot how good fried fish is!

For two servings of fish, you’ll need two large fillets or four small ones. Set up three shallow pans or dinner plates for the different steps of breading. In one pan, lightly whisk two eggs with a tablespoon of water. In another pan put three-quarters of a cup of flour. In the third, three-quarters of a cup of Italian seasoned bread crumbs. If you only have plain bread crumbs, season your flour with dry or fresh herbs, salt and pepper.

In a large fry pan, heat two to three tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium heat.

While the oil heats, rinse and dry the fish and generously season it with salt and pepper. Dredge the fish in the flour, then the egg, then the bread crumbs and carefully place it in the pan. Depending on the thickness of the fish, let it cook for about three minutes on each side. The breading should be golden and crunchy looking. Smaller fillets probably only need two minutes on each side.

Let the fish sit for a minute on some paper towels to absorb any excess oil. Sprinkle it with some lemon juice and serve with tartar sauce, mayonnaise, ketchup, whatever you like!

I made a side of herbed cherry tomatoes – they go with everything and take ten minutes from start to finish. Enjoy!

PS Those are my new placements from Crate and Barrel – nice, right??

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Getting over a fear of fish

I love fish. I love to cook. For some reason, I never liked to cook fish. It just seemed difficult and fish can be fragile and isn’t there a smell and will I poison myself?? Keep in mind, I like my beef so rare it’s practically grazing its way off my plate. I don’t know where this fear of undercooked fish came from but it’s been keeping fish out of my kitchen for the past several years.

No more! Not only is fish easy to cook but it’s fast, healthy and delicious. Here are some of the recent recipes I’ve been trying out:

Grilled Tuna Salad

This makes a great side dish for a bbq but it’s also a delicious lunch. Even though this link is for a tuna roll, just ignore the sandwich part and eat it as a side dish. Unless of course you want a sandwich! If you’re cooking tuna indoors, season the steak with lots of salt and pepper and saute in a DRY, very hot saute pan for 2-3 on each side. Tuna steaks should be pink in the middle so watch it carefully. You may only need a minute on the second side.

Image: Food Network

Spice Rubbed Tilapia (or salmon, or sea bass, etc.) with Strawberry Avocado Salsa

Wow. This recipe has such an interesting blend of flavors and they work beautifully together. My only suggestion for tweaking is that you rub the fish with salt and pepper before you apply the spice rub. The tilapia takes four minutes to cook. Four minutes!! The second time I made it I used salmon and that cooked for about eight minutes (no flipping if it has skin on one side).

Image: Whole Foods

Penne with Tomato Cream Sauce with Shrimp

Who knew cooking shrimp took under five minutes?? Apparently everyone but me. This is a delicious comfort food and it’s really easy to make. I use fresh shrimp from the fish store or butcher and ask for them to be peeled and deveined. Peeling them really isn’t that bad if you have to do it yourself. My only suggestion for this recipe is to substitute crushed tomatoes for some (or all) of the tomato sauce because the sauce can be a little watery.

Image: The Pioneer Woman

Get cooking!