April 04, 2008

Soy-Broiled Black Cod (a.k.a Sablefish)

I made this very easy and tasty recipe last night. Note to self: cook black cod more often.

This recipe involves marinating the fish briefly, then broiling.

The Ingredients

The Steps

  1. Season the fish with salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Combine the soy sauce, lime juice, dry sherry, sesame oil, and garlic. Pour over the fish, and marinate for 15 minutes.
  3. Broil 6 inches from the heat without turning for about 10 minutes, or until cooked through.

Serves about 4.

Posted by spaceling at 10:35 PM

August 05, 2006

Roasted Whole Trout with Herbs

Last night, when I was getting ready to leave work, I had no idea what I was going to make for dinner. So, I decided to just head for the grocery store, and hope that something would strike me.

I got to the fish counter, and there was a sign: "Rainbow Trout - $2.99/lb". Now, I'm always a little worried when I see fish on sale (does it mean that it's no good and they're trying to get rid of it?), but it's a lot harder to pass off a skanky whole fish as fresh than a skanky filet. These trout looked nice, so I got 2, loaded up on fresh herbs, and headed home to make dinner.

Now, I've never cooked whole trout before in my life, but I wasn't worried, because I have Mark Bittman's Fish, which is pretty much guaranteed to have cooking instructions for any type of seafood I might haul home from the market. So, I found a recipe for whole trout with herbs, and tweaked it a little to account for what I actually had on hand. (If I recall correctly, Bittman uses parsley and tarragon. I used parsley, rosemary, and thyme. Next time I'll have to add sage, and call it Scarborough Fair Trout.)



  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Mix the parsley, rosemary, thyme, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil in a small bowl.
  3. Salt and pepper the trout inside and out. Stuff the cavity of each with rosemary branches and thyme sprigs. Smear the outside with the herb/lemon/olive oil mixture and put the trout in a baking dish.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the flesh flakes off easily with a fork. Serve garnished with extra parsley, and lemon wedges.
Serves 2 pretty generously. Add a salad on the side, and you've got dinner.

Trout tastes a lot like a very mild salmon, with a nice buttery texture. I think it would be very easy for it to be bland, but roasting it with the herbs this way really gets the herb flavor into the fish.

Posted by spaceling at 10:33 AM | TrackBack

March 26, 2006

Easy Tilapia

Mr. Spaceling suggested that I blog this recipe as Easy, Sexy Tilapia. I'm not sure how sexy it is, but it's indisputibly easy.


The Steps

  1. Put a little soy sauce on a plate or in a shallow dish. Put the tilapia filets down on the plate, and sprinkle them with a little more soy sauce. Let them marinate for 15-20 minutes or so, while you prep other ingredients for dinner.
  2. Heat butter and olive oil in a non-stick skillet. Pat the tilapia filets dry with paper towels, and cook them, about 2 minutes a side, until they are cooked through.

You can keep the filets warm in a 200 F oven while you make a sauce or something to top the filets with. I made a sauce by sauteeing sliced shiitake mushrooms for a couple of minutes, then throwing in a ton of sliced green garlic, followed by 1/2 cup of white wine and 1 cup of chicken broth. I brought everything to a boil and simmered for 10 minutes, and then stirred in a tablespoon of butter. (If you watch cooking shows, you know that this is called "monter au beurre", which makes it sound really sophisticated.) Spoon generously over the fish to serve.

The green garlic topping was perfectly tasty, but fell short of amazing. (I think the distinctive garlic flavor was overwhelmed by the long cooking - it tasted like leeks cooked with a bit of garlic, which is perfectly fine, but I can get leeks anytime. I still have another bunch of green garlic, though, so I'll give it a go with another preparation and see how it turns out.

The tilapia was terrific. It was moist, flavorful, and had a nice hint of crispy browness on the outside. Mmmmm. It's nice to have a good way to cook tilapia, since it's cheap (for fish), and nearly always available. I'll definitely be cooking tilapia again, though probably with a different sauce/accompaniment.

Posted by spaceling at 08:50 PM

March 20, 2006

Shrimp, Pancetta, and Spinach Salad

Here's a catchup entry. I made this salad earlier this past week, using, among other ingredients, the mystery endive.

This dish was very, very loosely inspired by a shrimp, bacon, and spinach salad that I had at Applebee's, of all places. It was really quite good, except that a) they overdid it a bit on the dressing (which, given the calorie count of most restaurant dressings, probably means they really overdid it on the calories), and b) the dressing had an oddly sweet undertone that I didn't care for. This salad does not sweeten the dressing, and I served the dressing on the side so that each person could decide how much they wanted. However, the dressing includes rendered bacon (well, pancetta) fat, which is probably not going to please health food purists. (I don't think that the amount is excessive, but some people just don't go for pig fat. You can always leave it out.)

This recipe makes enough to serve 2 people for dinner and have enough left over for one of them to have a side serving of salad for lunch.

Ingredients: Salad

Ingredients: Dressing

The Steps

  1. Cook the pancetta in a skillet over medium to medium-low heat until it is crispy and some of the fat has rendered out. Remove the pancetta to a plate. Pour off most of the fat into a small bowl.
  2. Sprinkle the shrimp on both sides with dried thyme, salt, and pepper to taste. Saute the shrimp in the pan used to cook the pancetta until opaque and cooked through. (3 to 5 minutes.)
  3. Toss the hot shrimp with the pancetta and all the other salad ingredients in a large salad bowl.
  4. Make a vinaigrette dressing using the pancetta fat, olive oil, sherry vinegar, thyme, and generous dollops of Dijon mustard. (I threw the dressing together pretty much by feel - you want roughly twice as much fat/oil as vinegar. Just whisk everything together vigorously, taste, and adjust accordingly.)
  5. Serve the salad, passing the dressing and a pepper grinder for people to apply to their salad as suits them.

Posted by spaceling at 10:33 AM | TrackBack

March 19, 2006

Okra and Shrimp Stew

I'm catching up here - I made this dish nearly two weeks ago, when I picked up that okra at 99 Ranch. It was tasty enough to be recorded for future reference, so I scribbled down a few notes, but I didn't get around to putting together this post until today.

One nice thing about this recipe is that it's really quick. It only takes about 20 minutes to put together.

I adapted this recipe from a recipe in Barbara Kafka's Vegetable Love. She had a recipe for an okra and red pepper stew. I beefed it up into a main dish by adding shrimp and tomatoes, and spiced it up with a little Cajun seasoning.

This makes a fairly brothy stew. I just served it up in shallow bowls, but it would be terrific over rice or couscous.


The Steps

  1. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the okra. Cook, stirring, until bright green, about 4 minutes. (The okra really does turn a nice bright green. Pretty neat.
  2. Add roasted peppers, tomatoes, Cajun seasoning, broth, and shrimp. Stir everything together.
  3. Bring to a boil, and cook until the okra is tender and the shrimp are cooked through. Maybe 4 to 5 minutes.

Posted by spaceling at 09:13 PM