Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Fish for Dinner

After a weekend of dining out, I have decided dinner should be on the simpler side; nothing too spicy or heavy. I have defrosted some fish; petrale fillet of sole which is a thin, delicate white fish. This is a good fish to fry breaded or with a batter and if you are going very low calorie you can even steam it.

I have decided to do the fish in a light batter and serve it with some oven-baked rice and steamed zucchini. Since the rice takes the longest I will start with that process. I set the oven to bake at 400 degrees and then take a skillet that has a lid out to use for this. I melt 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) of butter and once melted I saute half a small onion. When the onion is soft, I add 1 cup of raw, long grain rice and let it cook a bit until it is translucent and slightly toasted. I slowly add two cups of broth (you can use chicken or vegetable); stir the rice and onion well; cover with the lid; and place in the pre-heated oven. It will take approximately 18-20 minutes.

Now I rinse and dry three zucchinis and set up my steamer pan with water. I cut the zucchini, place it in the steamer and turn the flame on to medium. It is now time to set up the fish. I rinse it, pat it dry with paper towels and set it aside. I put a cup of flour in a pie dish and add a bit of salt, pepper and dried thyme (a scant 1/4 teaspoon each). I then whisk one egg with a bit of water. The fish is so thin that it will cook really quickly (about three minutes) so I am waiting for the rice to be fully cooked before I start the fish.

After about 18 minutes, I carefully remove the covered pan from the oven. Now be very careful with this pan and cover it with potholders because it is easy to forget how hot it is if you need to move it suddenly. Luis and I have both had the experience of grabbing the pan barehanded accidentally - not very pleasant. When you remove the lid, the rice should be fluffy and there should be no liquid left.

In another, larger skillet I heat a small pat of butter with a bit of olive oil (in this case I have some lemon-infused olive oil to use to enhance the flavor). When the oil is hot, I coat each fish with the flour mixture first, then dip it in egg and then add to the oil in the pan. It should long take about 60-90 second per side of each fillet so everything else should be cooked and ready to serve.

For more flavor, you could add a light tomato sauce (similar to the albondigas sauce) or some green mole. In this case I unfortunately don't have either handy so our meal with be sauceless but by no means flavorless.

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