Sunday, October 31, 2010

Citrus Fish with Subtle Garlic Lime Vegetables

I love to eat fish. When I first started cooking, I had a lot of trouble replicating the delicious fish I had in restaurants. It would stick to the pan, it would be overcooked, it would be flavorless, something was always wrong. One day I decided to bake it, and I have never turned back. With baking, it is much easier to ensure the fish doesn't loose its seasoning and tastes lighter and fresher (like it should) because it hasn't been covered in oil in a frying pan.

Fish is a bit more pricey, especially if you are concerned about sustainable fishing practices. When I notice that fish is on sale, I buy a ridiculous amount - twenty pounds sometimes - and keep it in the freezer in single portion bag. This way I have delicious fish until it goes on sale next. White fish is my favorite, as its texture is light and flaky and it lends so easily to all sorts of subtle flavors.

For fish, vegetables are a match made in heaven, as is citrus and fresh herbs. I made this specific meal for lunch. If you'd like to bulk it up for dinner, add a side of brown rice or quinoa.

Citrus Fish with Garlic Lime Vegetables
serves 2
  • one half pound firm white fish fillets (such as tilapia, pollack, swai, flounder, etc) - each portion should be about 4 ounces
  •  one small red onion, sliced into very thin rings
  • two cloves garlic, minced
  • one clove garlic, smashed
  • one lemon
  • one lime
  • 4 tablespoons fresh chives, minced
  • one small Japanese eggplant
  • one zucchini squash
  • sea salt and ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 350°.

Arrange the whole rings of red onion at the bottom of a baking pan. Sprinkle a little bit of olive oil onto them (very little). Place the fish fillets on top and sprinkle with the black pepper and minced garlic. Halve the lemon and the lime. Squeeze about 2-3 tablespoons of lemon juice from the lemon, being careful to avoid seeds, and spread over the fish (this should use the whole lemon). Squeeze about a tablespoon of lime juice from the lime and spread over the fish (this should use half the lime - save the other half). Place the used lemon and lime halves at the edge of the baking dish and place in the oven. Cook the fish until it is firm and flakes easily, about 15-20 minutes.

Serve the fish fillets on top of the crispy-sweet red onion rings, each portion topped with a tablespoon of chives, alongside the vegetables.

Subtle Garlic Lime Vegetables

Cut the ends off the eggplant and zucchini. Halve lengthwise, then cut into 1/2 inch half-moon shapes. Sprinkle liberally with the sea salt, making sure to coat the pieces well. Leave to sit for about 20 minutes in order to draw out excess moisture and bitterness. Rinse the salt off, then pat dry.

Heat about two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat in a frying pan. Add the smashed clove of garlic and saute just until browned and fragrant, then remove from the pan and discard. Add in any leftover red onion you might have had from the fish and the completely dry eggplant and zucchini pieces. Saute over medium heat until crisp-tender, about 5-10 minutes. Squeeze the remaining lime half over the top and toss in about two tablespoons of the chives, mix to coat and remove from heat.

Beautiful fish and vegetables, pictured here with a wedge of Spinach Asiago bread from Bread of Life Bakery

No comments:

Post a Comment