Fish & Shellfish

Oven-Fried Parmesan-Panko Crusted Tilapia

Even non-fish lovers will enjoy this oven-fried tilapia. Dressed up just like Chicken Parm with a Parmesan-Panko crust, you may not even be able to tell the difference!

Oven-Fried Panmesan-Panko Crusted Tilapia

Before I talk about this recipe I must add a little commentary about how sad yet excited I am for the finale of How I Met Your Mother tonight. I unfortunately won’t actually be watching it this evening as I have a couple other episodes to catch up on first, but either way cannot believe it is about to be over. It is time for it to end but I will miss it dearly. Now I’ll just have to wait for the boxed set to come out and then rewatch the entire thing!

For Secret Recipe Club this month, I was assigned to Mary Kay’s blog Homemade Cravings. With things such as Tortellini Pizza with Sausage and Alfredo, Cherry Lemonade, and Vanilla Souffle with Chocolate Sauce, I certainly had a fair amount of great recipes to choose from. Oddly enough I ended up picking a fish recipe in spite of my dislike for seafood in general. When I read the post about this tilapia and how all four of her kids enjoyed it despite only recently incorporating fish into the family meals, I knew I had to give it a shot. Mild fish coated in Panko and Parmesan cheese seemed like a safe starting point, and it turned out to be true. This fish-hater could not tell that it was fish. In fact the tilapia itself didn’t taste like much while the crust was the shining star – and Parmesan is delicious! Now if only all fish didn’t taste like fish.

Although I will continue to depend on the cheaper option of chicken most of the time, it’s good to know that I am capable of cooking and enjoying fish for the fish-loving people in my life and not needing to prepare something separate for myself. Thank you Mary Kay for opening my eyes to fish (even if only a sliver). Maybe I’ll get frisky and try another fish recipe such as the Root Beer Battered Fish which sounds like another I would enjoy. I do love root beer!

Three years ago: Orange Beef
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Guest Post: Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo by Southern Charm

Other than the red beans and rice I made recently, after living in Memphis for four years I certainly don’t dabble much into southern style foods. It’s not that I don’t like it, quite the contrary. I just don’t think about it since I am surrounded by it all the time. For example, I make BBQ very infrequently for living in a BBQ capital. I guess the problem is that it’s too easy to go out and get it so I don’t feel the urge to make it myself (call me lazy).

But today I have Liz of Southern Charm from New Orleans, sharing a special treat with you – shrimp and sausage gumbo. Once you have finished eating this up be sure to check out her blog for more!

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Hey y’all!! I’m Liz from Southern Charm with a very special southern style meal for you. This meal is perfect for those of you who are lucky enough to have weather below 80 degrees.

Now, when I first told Erin I’d do a guest post, I was set on sharing my Praline Cupcake recipe. Yes, I know. They sound amazing! Trust me, they taste just as DELICIOUS! However, the heavy cream I purchased at the grocery today was bad, like September 2011 bad! Also, I had used all of my butter and brown sugar (the steps before adding the heavy cream). I felt defeated. I really wanted to share some of my roots with you.

So, I headed to my fridge to see what I had, knowing there must be something. Onions and red peppers. Two of three ingredients required for the New Orleans “holy trinity”. I knew I was on the right track.

Next I needed to inventory my protein. Chicken sausage. At first red beans and rice popped in my head, but I quickly remembered Erin had recently shared a red beans and rice recipe. So it was a sprint to the freezer to see if I had shrimp. I did. The wheels in my mind were turning.

After making sure I had most of the ingredients I needed, I was set. Today, I will be sharing one amazing and simple recipe for Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo.

There is just something about this soup. And it’s not really a soup. It’s GUMBO! Maybe it’s the sausage AND shrimp? Or the heat from the spice? Maybe the fact that it starts with a roux. I’m not sure. But what I am sure about is that you should try this tonight.

Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 50 minutes
Yields: 4 cups

Ingredients:

1/3 c olive oil
1/3 c flour
1/2 onion, diced
1/2 large bell pepper, diced
2 stalks celery, diced (not, I did not have celery in my recipe, but it is the third ingredient to the “holy trinity”)
3 chicken sausage
9 oz shrimp, peeled and deveind (I used frozen shrimp)
2 c chicken broth (I used vegetable because it was in my fridge)
1/2 can diced tomatoes (I used a whole can because I’m trying to add more tomatoes to my life)
1 tbsp Tony Chacheres’
1 tsp red pepper flakes
4-9 splashes of hot sauce (if you like your food HOT, then go closer to 9)

Directions:

1. Add the olive oil and flour to a large pot set at medium-high. This is the most IMPORTANT step. If the roux burns, you have to start over. Once you add the two, constantly stir until the roux is mohogany brown.

2. Right when the roux is ready, add the onions, bell pepper and celery. Stir.

3. Next add the sausage, red pepper flakes, and your choice of liquid. Simmer for 20 minutes.

4. Add the shrimp, hot sauce and tomatoes. Simmer for another 20 minutes.

5. Serve either over half a serving of rice or by itself, and enjoy every spicy, tasty and warm bite.

Want to know another great thing about this recipe? There are so many ways you can change things up. Try chicken and sausage, or shrimp and okra. Oh, and there is always crab meat! I’ve even had gumbos with carrots and potatoes. Possibilities are endless!

Salmon Florentine

I don’t like seafood. As a result I never cook it, to Brent’s dismay. I’ve always agreed with the statement that you shouldn’t cook things that you do not like. Understandably so because you won’t want to taste test before serving it up. But I was feeling ambitious, and decided that I was going to cook salmon for dinner. Sometimes I gotta pretend to be a good girlfriend, right?

After reading up a bit on how to cook salmon, I incorporated the tips I found into this recipe. And I have to say it looks delicious despite my unwillingness to actually eat any of it. Somehow Brent managed to get a fork-ful in my mouth and it wasn’t as terrible as I was anticipating. Maybe I will warm up to seafood eventually.

So now the question is, “what did you make for yourself, Erin?”. I substituted with chicken of course! You would have never known it was meant to be cooked with Salmon. So if there are any picky eaters out there who share my feelings, this is an easy recipe that can be made to order.

Serve with Quinoa Pilaf With Pine Nuts.

Ingredients:

1 package 12 oz frozen spinach, thawed

1 Tbsp olive oil

1/4 cup minced shallots

2 tsp minced garlic

5 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste

1/2 cup part-skim ricotta

4 skinless salmon fillets (6 oz each), rinsed and patted dry (or chicken!)

8 rings of onion, 1/2 inch thick

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Squeeze spinach of all excess liquid. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add shallots; cook, stirring, until soft, about 3 minutes. Add garlic; cook 1 minute more. Add spinach, tomatoes, salt, pepper flakes and pepper; cook, stirring, 2 minutes more. Remove from heat; let cool about 15 minutes.
  3. Add ricotta; stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. On four separate sheets of foil, place fillets on top of two rings of onion.  Pack about 1/2 cup spinach mixture on top of each fillet, matching the shape of the fillet. Fold up foil into packets, place on rimmed baking sheet and bake until cooked through, 15 minutes.

Source: Adapted from Ellie Krieger on SELF

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