Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Last Night's Dinner #31: Tilapia en Papillote & Ode to Summer Salad

Fish is so easy to cook, I really should make it a staple. If you can't be bothered to go to the fish market the day of, Trader Joe's carries a wide variety of vacuum packed fish that I've cooked with several times. I've never had a bad catch from there!

Last night I decided to cook "en papillote" in parchment bag. It's the easiest thing in the world. Preheat the oven, stuff the parchment pouch with fish fillets and herbs and you'll have a deliciously healthy and simple meal in less than 10 minutes.

I decided to serve this with a refreshing ode to summer salad - a mixture of avocado, mango, apple pear (Asian pear), red onions and cilantro. I love salads with fruit. You can also serve this with cous cous or a mashed/baked potato if you're looking for something heartier.

Tilapia en Papillote

Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 10 mins
Difficulty: Easy
Serves 2

You'll need:
2 Tilapia fillets
2 sprigs each of thyme, parsley, oregano
2 slices of lemon (wheels)
2 Tbs of butter
1 shallot cut into slices
coarse salt and ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400F. Wash fillets and pat dry with paper towels. Season well with salt and pepper. Place fillets on top of cut parchment paper (ehow.com and latimes.com have excellent "en papillote" step by step instructions) and top with shallots, butter, lemon wheel and herbs. Seal the pouch and cook for 8-10 minutes.

Other good combos to try:
:: cherry tomatoes, olives, garlic, lemon, oregano, thyme
:: thyme, lemon and cinnamon sticks

Ode to Summer Salad
1/2 mango sliced in 1/4" strips
1/2 apple pear (Asian pear) sliced in 1/4" strips
1/2 avocado cut into thin slices
handful of mixed greens

Combine ingredients and chill until ready to serve.

Red Wine Vinaigrette
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/8 cup lemon juice
1 tsp honey
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

Combine all ingredients minus the oil. Drizzle in the oil little by little while mixing.

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