Since I am always looking for ways to incorporate more fish into our diets, my brain is usually working overtime to come up with different recipes that are delicious and healthy at the same time.
I wanted to do a simple fish stew that is a bit French and Italian at the same time. I sauteed the fish lightly and added the onions and garlic. For extra flavor, I used parsley and my favorite herb that goes so well with fish- dill. Tomato paste makes this fast stew taste like it has been on the stove for hours.
The most important ingredient in this dish (besides the fish) is the fish stock. I was able to find it at Whole Foods and I believe it is available in most grocery store. If you can’t find it, don’t worry- use chicken stock instead but I have to say, the fish stock provides a great flavor to this simple dish. I added potatoes to make this stew a bit more substantial. I was initially thinking of serving a salad with the dish but then decided to come up with a zucchini pesto and served it on top of some toasted bread- that is the Italian part of the meal.
My daughter loved the stew including the zucchini pesto bruschetta. My husband and I opened a Pinto Noir and enjoyed a lovely dinner.
Try this quick, delicious fish stew for dinner next time you feel like eating fish…
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This is a delicious way to incorporate fish into your diet. Typically cooking a biryani can take all day and the results are unbelievably delicious with complex flavors- but in order to make this dish through the week- I needed to simplify it. I skipped a few steps and this version is definitely not as detailed but it is extremely delicious and full of flavor.
I think the key to use very bold flavors with extremely fresh ingredients. My daughter loves cod and so I decided to go with it for this preparation. Any white, sturdy fish can be used- tilapia or catfish are quite popular for Indian curries.
I sauteed the fish quickly to brown each side and then cooked the onion, garlic, cilantro and dill mixture. I didn’t cook the fish all the way in order not to overcook it in the oven later with the rice. The whole process took me less than an hour- of course I cooked the basmati rice in advance and cooled it off. Once the curry and the rice were layered, I covered the dish with a wet cheesecloth to provide moisture and baked it for half an hour.
Next time you are confused what to do with fish- try making a fish biryani.
- 1½ cups basmati rice
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon salt
Bring the chicken broth to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the rice and salt and bring to a boil. Cook on high till the liquid begins to evaporate. Cover and cook for ten minutes. The rice should about three quarters done since the rest will be cooked with the fish curry. Take out of the saucepan and spread on a plate to cool off.
- 1 pound cod fillets, cut into 2 inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons extra light olive oil
Heat the olive oil in a heavy Dutch oven on high heat. Add the cod pieces and sauté 2 minutes each on both sides while sprinkling salt. Take out and keep aside (the pieces won’t cook through- which is what we are looking for).
- 1 medium onion, rough chopped
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 cup cilantro, rough chopped
- ½ dill, rough chopped
- ¼ cup water
Add the onion, garlic, cilantro, dill and water into a blender. Blend till the mixture is turned into a smooth paste. Keep aside.
- 1 tablespoon extra light olive oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- ¾ teaspoon ajwain (carom) seeds
- 1/3 cup half and half
- 2 teaspoon coriander powder
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 cheesecloth
Preheat oven to 400 F.
Reheat the Dutch oven and add the olive oil. Add the cumin and ajwain seeds. Saute for a minute, or till the seeds start to sizzle. Add the dill paste and sauté on medium heat for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the half and half and turn heat down to medium low. Add the coriander powder, cayenne pepper and salt to taste. Cook on low heat for another 4 to 5 minutes stirring constantly. Turn the heat off. Let the pan cool off for a few minutes and then add the fish pieces. Mix careful not to break the fish pieces. Add the fish curry to the bottom of an ovenproof dish. Add the rice on top and cover with a wet cheesecloth. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes. Serve with raita and a cucumber salad.
This red bean salad was the third dish we made for the cooking class. The recipe came about in my attempt to keep up with the number of mangoes ripening in my kitchen. I wanted to eat a refreshing salad that included mangoes. I decided to pair it with red beans- first because it’s good to have protein in the salad and second because I like the red color against the mangoes. I had a few vidalia spring onions (they look like regular spring onions but are much bigger) but regular spring onions will work as well. They gave the salad a soft onion flavor. I also added an orange pepper- for it’s crunch and lovely color- we used a yellow one for the cooking class- all the different colors look gorgeous together. Cilantro added the much needed bright green color. The feta was a last minute addition- not sure what prompted me but I have to say, it was a brilliant one! The creamy and salty flavor goes very well with the sweet mangoes and peppers. I decided to make the dressing with the mango pineapple juice I had in the fridge- now I am not a big juice person- but this juice is absolutely delicious! I buy it once in a while from Whole Foods since it is quite expensive. During the cooking class I juiced a large fresh navel orange and it was just fine. Lime juice and honey added the much needed sweet and sour taste and balanced the flavors out. I added one of my favorite ingredients to the dressing- chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. It adds great smoky and spicy flavor to any dish- I use it in marinades and sauces all the time- it’s delicious.
For the class I paired this salad with the malai chicken and the vegetable korma– but when I was testing the recipe, I paired it with some fish. There is nothing simple, quick and healthier to eat than a nice fillet of fresh fish! I decided to pan saute the fillets of cod and serve simply with- salt, lime juice and a little burst of a smoky flavor- ancho chili powder– I used this particular spice since it echoed the flavor of the adobo in chipotle but was not as spicy. Overall a very healthy meal- my daughter devoured the fish- I didn’t add the ancho powder for her. I gave her some roasted corn on the side- as she does not like anything too tangy- so the salad didn’t appeal to her at all- but she couldn’t get enough of the fish!!!
- 1 pound or 3-4 fillets of Cod
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
- Juice of one lime
Drizzle the olive oil on the fish and then sprinkle with salt, ancho chili powder and limejuice. Heat a non-stick frying pan and cook the fish on high heat. Turn the fish after 3 minutes or till the side is golden brown. Cook the other side for another 3-4 minutes depending on how thick the fillets are.
Red Bean and Mango Salad
- 20 ounces can of red beans
- 2 spring Vidalia onions, chopped including the green part
- 1 orange or red peppers, chopped
- 2 mangoes peeled and chopped
- ½ cup cilantro, chopped
- 1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- Juice of 2 limes
- ¼ cup mango pineapple juice (pineapple or orange juice can be used)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 teaspoon ground roasted cumin
- 1 teaspoon chipotle in adobo sauce (use more if you like spicy)
- Salt to taste
Add the limejuice, mango pineapple juice, honey, roasted cumin, adobo sauce and salt to a small bowl. Whisk the olive oil until the vinaigrette is emulsified. Keep aside.
In a large bowl, add the red beans, Vidalia onions, red peppers, mangoes, cilantro and feta. Add the vinaigrette and check for seasonings.
I love all sorts of mushrooms! I try to eat them in every possible way I can but, my favorite is in pasta. I was thinking about the New Year and eating well and healthy. My plan was to make pounded chicken cutlets with the pasta to add some healthy protein. I went shopping for my ingredients and made my way into the fish section and noticed that cod was on sale! So I decided to make cod fillets with the pasta. Luckily my daughter enjoys both mushrooms and most fishes. I also bought fresh whole-wheat pasta- again it’s the whole staying healthy theme. I have to say fresh whole-wheat pasta is a completely different specie than the dry! It has great texture and tastes yum!
I decided to step out in my back yard and gather some fresh rosemary and thyme (they are still doing quite well despite the weather) before I came back inside to unload my groceries.
I remembered to use my favorite Christmas gift this year, my 14 inches all clad frying pan! It is awesome! I love cooking in it. It is so big and pretty, it makes me happy every time I look at it. Decided to open a bottle of left over Beaujolais-Villages from Thanksgiving and started cooking! I know I am supposed to drink white wine with fish but somehow mushrooms always remind me of red so I think the Beaujolais is a good compromise.
- 5 ounces sliced shitake mushrooms
- 2 large sliced portabella mushrooms
- 10 ounces sliced white button mushrooms
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 shallots, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
- 1 teaspoon chopped thyme
- 2 teaspoons all purpose flour
- 1 cup chicken broth
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cup pecorino romano grated
- 3/4 pound cooked whole-wheat papperdelle pasta
- 3-4 fillets of Cod
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon of chopped thyme and rosemary
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Extra salt for the fillets
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
In a wide frying pan heat the extra virgin olive oil. Add the mushrooms and sauté till golden brown, about 7 to 8 minutes. Add shallots, garlic, thyme and rosemary. Then sprinkle the mushroom mixture with the flour. Cook the flour for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and whisk until a smooth gravy is formed. In the meantime cook the pasta till al dente. Once the pasta is done, add it to the mushroom mixture and add salt and pepper to taste. Top with the pecorino romano.
Sprinkle salt on the fillets and set aside. Mix the thyme, rosemary, 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper with the flour. Dredge the fillets with the flour mixture. Heat a non-stick skillet with the olive oil and cook the fillets for about 5 minutes on each side or till done.
Serve on top of the mushroom pasta!