Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Something Fishy

Dear Readers,

Living in suburbia has its benefits. The grocery stores are massive and I can find just about everything I could ever want or need under one big warehouse roof. However, I miss the magnificence of having the Chinese fish market on Canal Street just a stone’s throw over the Manhattan Bridge. You can buy any sea creature imaginable there and even a pond frog or two. The crabs are so fresh, they’re still moving even though they’re on ice. I swear they pluck things right out of the ocean and drive them to Chinatown. You can get scallops the size of clementines and the large shrimp look like small lobsters. The prices are ridiculously inexpensive as well. I can cook a broiled seafood combination for a fraction of the cost as I can do it in the burbs, and everything seems so much fresher on the streets of NYC with tails still flipping on their bed of ice rather than in the refrigerator display at the grocery.

Those were the days! But now, since the grocery store is what I have at my disposal, I’m trying to learn new dishes with fishes that I wouldn’t normally have purchased in NYC. Don’t let the title of this post fool you. Fish should never be “fishy” tasting, if it is…it’s not fresh. I’m not a huge fan of farm raised fish but thought that tilapia would be a pretty safe bet because it’s mild and meaty. After doing a little recipe searching I found one for tilapia that was really very easy and quite tasty to boot. The sauce that is spread on top of the fish before the final broil gave it a creamy, cheesy deliciousness and the texture as hearty. I will definitely make this again, maybe even this week!

Truly & tastefully,

Broiled Tilapia Parmesan
2 lbs tilapia fillets
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4cup soft butter
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon onion powder, depending on taste
1/8 teaspoon celery salt
Black pepper to taste

Preheat broiler. Line a broiling pan with aluminum foil and spray it with cooking spray. In a bowl, mix together the parmesan, butter, mayo, and lemon juice as well as the spices: basil, pepper, onion power and celery salt. Position fillets top side up on the aluminum foil in one layer. Broil a few inches from the heat for 2-3 minutes. Flip the fillets and broil the other side for 2-3 minutes. Flip the fillets one more time and cover them with the cheesy mixture on the top side. Broil for 1-2 minutes until the cheesy topping is bubbly and brown and the tilapia is flaky (fork test it).

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