Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Crispy Tilapia, Lemon-Thyme Quinoa, Sauteéd Bok Choy

This is a leftover from last month that I just got around to typing up. This fish stick is a little fancier than your average minced and frozen variety. By blending the seasonings into the buttermilk-egg bath, you avoid the loss of flavor caused by heat. Instead the subtle garlicky, lemony flavor cozies right up into the fish. You won't even miss the tartar sauce!

The side dishes we flavored to compliment the fish. I used red quinoa, because that's what I happened to have on hand; however, an variety will do. The bok choy is super quick and provides a leafy green to balance out the meal.

Crispy Tilapia Fish Sticks

1 egg
1/4 cup buttermilk
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1/2 tsp lemon zest
12 oz tilapia, cut into 1" wide strips
salt and pepper to taste
1 c coarse bread crumbs (panko, for example)

Preheat oven to 425F.

In a blender, blend egg, buttermilk, garlic, thyme, lemon zest, and a pinch of salt and pepper; transfer to a shallow bowl. Place the bread crumbs in a separate shallow bowl.

Season the tilapia strips with salt and pepper. Dip each strip into the buttermilk mixture, allowing excess liquid to drain off, then coat in bread crumb mixture. Lay on a baking sheet and repeat with remaining fish sticks. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Makes 4 servings (about 2 fish sticks per person).

Lemon-Thyme Quinoa

2 c fish or vegetable stock (or amount required per your quinoa package directions)
1 c quinoa
juice of 1 large lemon
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small shallot, minced
1 tbs fresh thyme leaves
salt and pepper to taste

Prepare quinoa according to package directions using stock of choice.

Meanwhile, whisk together the remaining ingredients to form the dressing. Toss the dressing with the prepared quinoa until it is well mixed. Serves 4.

Herb Sauteéd Bok Choy

2 tbs light olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp lemon zest
1 head bok choy, rinsed, and sliced into 1/4" inch ribbons (including stems)
1 tbs fresh thyme leaves
1/4 c fresh basil leaves, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook for about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and zest; cook an additional minute. Add the bok choy and oregano into the pan; stir to combine with the onions. Cook it for a couple more minutes, or until cabbage just begins to wilt. Remove from heat.

Toss cabbage with the fresh basil and season to taste. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.

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