April’s Cooking Class – Fish

I’m so glad we could all get together and explore some new fish options.  I hope you guys try some of these recipes and report back – I’m sure you’ll come up with lots of  variations in additions to these ideas.  Fish is a great starting place and its fun to add all kinds of side dishes, relishes, sauces, etc. to go with what can be a simple (and healthy!) protein.  Don’t forget to make a big batch of the “Pink Mayonnaise” – it goes great on everything!  (you could put it on a car bumper!)

NOTE:  Don’t forget to let me know if you want to join the Eat Up! facebook group.  Let’s encourage each other to make health-promoting food choices, and learn how to feed our bodies, not our emotions!

Smoked Salmon and Egg Salad Tartines from Ina Garten  – click here for the recipe.  I adjusted it by using Udi’s GF bread, cutting off the crusts, and brushing with a little olive oil (you can add some chopped garlic to the oil if you are feeling fancy).  Put on a baking sheet and toast in the oven at 350 degrees – about 10-12 minutes or so, depending on your oven (just keep your eye on it).  I used smoked salmon from Trader Joe’s.  Assemble just before serving.

The Dueling Salmon Salads:

What an interesting experiment!  The olive oil/vinegar based salad is from Ina Garten – here is the recipe.  The mayonnaise based salad is from Paula Deen, recipe is here.   I followed both recipes pretty closely, although I left out the capers in Ina Garten’s recipe.  Just as a reminder, if you use canned salmon for these or other recipes, remember to save a few minutes to pick through for bones, skin, etc.

Fish Packets:

Ok, how easy are these?!  I used a combination of recipes for these, so I’ll give you the basic instructions, then go crazy with the variations you and your family members can come up with.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees, or fire up the grill.  Put a bit of olive oil or cooking spray on the foil, then start layering. Putting very thinly sliced potatoes at the bottom (sprinkled with a little salt and pepper), fresh spinach or other veggies cut into small pieces, then fish with a few slices of lemon and dots of butter or compound butter. Or start with the fish on the bottom and just add mixed veggies on top.  Gather the foil to make a packet, put on a baking sheet and bake for anywhere from 8-12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish.  No, there’s no secret to figuring that out – you just have to take the packets out and take a peak.   This is such an easy recipe and you can get really creative with the combinations of flavors.  Try different fish, veggies, add some onion or shallots, fresh or dried herbs – endless possibilities.  The really great thing – they go together quickly and you can make them up ahead, then pop them in the oven (or on the grill) when you get home from a busy day and dinner will be done in no time.

Fish Tacos:

I’m so excited you guys liked the fish tacos!  They are favorites of mine, and a great choice when you have a bunch of people to feed.  Like the fish packets, so many possibilities of how to build them.  Along with the following side dishes, make sure you serve with some salsa (homemade or your favorite store bought brand), shredded cabbage, fresh cilantro and lime wedges for squishing over the whole mess.  Fish tacos are only great when they are really messy and sloppy, so grab some napkins and enjoy!

Bake the fish (I used Mahi Mahi but any firm white fish works fine) at 350 degrees (just oil a baking sheet, then put a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper on both sides of the fish).  Bake them for approximately 6 minutes on one side, then 4-6 minutes on the other.  (Keep an eye out so they don’t overcook).  Warm the corn tortillas either in foil in the oven or toast on a grill pan on the stovetop.  (Put in foil to keep them warm).  


Mango-Radish Salsa (Tyler Florence’s recipe)

  • 2 limes
  • 2 mangoes, diced
  • 4 to 5 red radishes, diced
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, leaves chopped
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Remove the peel and pith from the limes and cut between the membranes to remove the segments. Put these “supremes” into a bowl and squeeze over the juice from the membranes. Add the remaining ingredients and mix. Season and refrigerate until ready to use. You can also place all of the ingredients into a food processor and puree for a smoother salsa.

Pickled Red Onion and Jalapeno (from www.epicurious.com)

  • 1 red onion (about 12 ounces), halved lengthwise, cut thinly crosswise
  • 5 whole small jalapeños
  • 2 cups seasoned rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt

Place onion and jalapeños in heatproof medium bowl. Mix vinegar, lime juice, and salt in small saucepan. Bring just to boil, stirring until salt dissolves. Pour over onion and jalapeños. Let stand at room temperature at least 1 hour and up to 8 hours. (Can be made 1 week ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

“Pink Mayonnaise” – Actually called Red Pepper Sauce (from Rachael Ray)

  • 1 (8-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, drained, or 1 large freshly prepared roasted red pepper (I used jar of roasted red and yellow pepper from Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup prepared chili sauce (I used Trader Joe’s seafood sauce)

For red pepper sauce, combine drained red peppers in a food processor bowl with mayonnaise and chili sauce. Pulse/grind the ingredients into a smooth sauce. Transfer sauce to a small serving dish.



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