Saturday, April 13, 2013

Crispy Oven-Baked Fish

We are trying to eat more fish during the week and this is one of my favorites.  It produces a crunchy exterior and tender white flesh inside.  Serve with Tartar Sauce. This was a recipe I tested for America's Test Kitchen in 2008.

4 large slices white sandwich bread, torn into 1-inch pieces
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Table salt and ground black pepper
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1 small shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
1/4 cup plus 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
1 1/4 pounds cod, haddock, or other thick white fish fillets (1 to 1 1/2-inches), cut into 4 pieces
Lemon wedges

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Pulse bread, melted butter, 1/4-teaspoon salt, and 1/4-teaspoon pepper in food processor until bread is coarsely ground, eight 1-second pulses (you should have about 3 1/2 cups crumbs). Transfer to rimmed baking sheet and bake until deep golden brown and dry, about 15 minutes, stirring twice during baking time. Allow crumbs to cool at room temperature for 10 minutes. Leaving crumbs on baking sheet, toss with parsley and shallot. Increase oven temperature to 425 degrees.

2. Place 1/4-cup flour in pie plate. In second pie plate, whisk eggs, horseradish, mayonnaise, paprika, cayenne pepper (if using), and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper until combined; whisk in remaining 5 tablespoons flour until smooth.

3. Spray wire rack with nonstick cooking spray and place in rimmed baking sheet. Dry fish thoroughly with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Dredge 1 fillet in flour; shake off excess. Using tongs, coat with egg mixture. Coat all sides of fillet with breadcrumb mixture, pressing gently so that thick layer of crumbs adheres to fish. Transfer breaded fish to wire rack. Repeat with remaining 3 pieces of fish.

4. Bake fish until instant-read thermometer inserted into center of fillet registers 140 degrees, 18 to 25 minutes. Using thin spatula, transfer fillets to individual plates, and serve immediately with lemon wedges.

Dinner suggestion shown:  Crispy Oven-Baked Fish, Butter Sauced Corn, Marinated Tomato and Onion Salad.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Broccoli Salad

I am always looking for ways to include vegetables that haven't been cooked so they retain their natural goodness.  You can always eat them straight up but some times you need a little extra "goodness" to go along with the veggies besides a dip.  This is an old standby for church suppers or pot-luck dinners but it was recently unknown to me. Now that I have found it, I make it often.

3 clusters fresh broccoli florets (no stems)
6-8 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 cup sunflower kernels

1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 -1/2 cup sugar (to taste)
2 tbsp white vinegar

In a small bowl, combine the dressing ingredients; stir until smooth. Cover and refrigerate until chilled and sugar is dissolved. In a bowl, combine the broccoli, bacon, onion, raisins and sunflower kernels. Pour dressing over broccoli mixture, toss and serve.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, October 14, 2011

Rocky Mountain Olive Oil Company

I went to visit a friend and ended up finding the most incredible little shop in Fort Collins, CO.  It is called the Rocky Mountain Olive Oil Company.  

The store allows you to taste their premium olive oils and balsamic vinegars while giving you information on their products.  They have over 45 premium extra virgin olive oils, 18 varieties of flavored balsamic vinegar and 6 specialty oils.  They recommend certain pairings of vinegar and olive oil but you are also encouraged to experiment with various combinations.   Believe me what this couple offers is nothing resembling the acrid awful stuff you get in the grocery store.  I used to wonder why chefs recommended balsamic vinegar reduction for dressing strawberries.  If I had used the stuff from the grocery store, it would have been a disaster but this product is sweet and down-right yummy.  

I ended up purchasing 8 bottles and had them shipped to my house so I didn't have to check my bag at the airport which as we all know would cost more than shipping.    I purchased 18-year-old traditional, ripepeach, lavender and dark chocolate balsamic vinegars, Meyer lemon, and Persian lime olive oils.  These oils and vinegars are heaven on the tongue.  It is an experience worth sharing.  You can check out their offerings at

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Apricot Fried Pie

Six (9-inch) rounds of pie dough (can be cut from rolled, refrigerated pie dough if you don't want to make your own)
Peanut or safflower oil, as needed, for frying
For the filling:

6 ounces dried apricots
½ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 to 5 drops almond extract
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Take pastry dough out of the refrigerator.
Prepare the filling: Combine apricots with water to cover in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat; cover and simmer until plump and soft, about 30 minutes. Add remaining filling ingredients to saucepan; mash well. Continue simmering, uncovered, until thick and cohesive, 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside.
Heat an inch of peanut or safflower oil in a large cast-iron or other heavy-bottomed skillet. Unroll pastry dough and cut out circles four- to five-inches in diameter using a jar lid, saucer, cup, or other circular cutting aid.
Lightly moisten the edges of each circle of dough with a pastry brush. Spoon a tablespoon of prepared filling into the center. Fold the circle over the filling and align with the bottom half. If any filling sneaks out as you fold, push it back a bit and try again. Wipe the edges of the dough clean; any exposed filling will burn. Press the seam closed all around the edges with your fingers, pushing in toward the center to plump the pie as you go. Use a fork to crimp. Repeat with remaining ingredients.
Use a thermometer to test the oil; once it reaches between 350˚ and 375˚F, carefully drop pies in one at a time. Fry until the edges begin to turn golden brown (about 30 seconds), and then flip and fry another 20 seconds or so. Remove hot pies to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
These are best eaten hot out of the fryer, but can also be frozen and/or reheated. A scoop of vanilla ice cream brings them from fantastic to heavenly.
Baked Variation:

You may also bake half-moon pies on an ungreased baking sheet at 350˚F for 15 minutes.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Little Mushroom Chicken Salad

Posting # 3 from Under the Mushroom.  This page is stained and barely hanging into the spiral binding.  That's probably a testament to how often I referred to this recipe.

8 halved chicken breasts, cooked and cut into large bite-size pieces
2 C
celery, chopped
1/2 C toasted almonds, sliced
6 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1/2 tsp chicken soup base
1 tsp white pepper

1 tsp sugar
1/2 C mayonnaise
salt to taste

Mix first 4 ingredients until well blended.  In a small bowl, mix next 5 ingredients until well blended.  Combine two sets of ingredients and toss gently.  Chill until ready to serve.  Serves 8.