Baked Tilapia with Mustard Lemon & Horseradish Sauce

This is really a very easy and delicious way to serve up dinner. We try to eat fish often, ideally two times  a week, and the same old recipes can get boring real fast. I served this with some roasted okra and Trader Joe’s Harvest Grains Blend.

The flavors in this are subtle so don’t be afraid of the horseradish or the mustard. In fact, I might even recommending amping up the measurements just a tad for a bolder flavor. However, made according to the recipe it was just right for Number Two’s more sensitive palate, and all the boys ate it up quick.

baked tilapia

Baked Tilapia with Mustard Lemon and Horseradish Sauce

4 tilapia fillets

2 T fresh chopped parsley, divided

1 T fresh lemon juice

2 tsp prepared horseradish

1 tsp dijon mustard

1/4 chicken broth

2 T butter, divided into 4 slices

zest from 1/2 lemon

1 tsp thyme

1 lemon, cut into 4 wedges

salt and pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400*. Lightly spray baking dish and salt and pepper fish on both sides. Place fish in single layer in dish.

2. In a small bowl put 1 T parsley, mustard, horseradish, chicken broth, thyme, and lemon juice. Whisk until combined then spoon over the fish, pouring it all in the baking dish.

3. Top each fillet with the 1/2 T slice of butter and bake for 20 minutes or so, basting once or twice, until fish flakes easily with a fork.

4. Sprinkle remaining parsley and lemon zest over the top and serve with lemon wedges.

5. Enjoy this delicious and healthy meal!

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Spinach & Goat Cheese-Tilapia Roulade with Tarragon Bechamel

Truth is some dishes just don’t photograph well, which is why although I HAVE attempted some of the recipes on the last two menu plans such as Greek Chicken, Pear & Pecan Muffins, and Chicken Pad Thai. None of them came out all that great and definitely weren’t photo quality. However, that is not the case with these tilapia roulades. The picture may not be ideal, but the taste was pretty delicious. (Even Number Two ate it up. Bonus!)

This recipe started out as one for stuffed salmon. It sounded awesome but I didn’t have any salmon handy. Then I had another recipe for an herb & veggie stuffed sole (rolled up), but alas, I didn’t have half of those ingredients either. What I ended up with was an improvisation using what I had on hand, using the two other recipes as a guideline. Usually this kind of innovative  cooking does not serve me well, but this time I have to say it was pretty darn good.

tilapia roll1

Spinach & Goat Cheese Tilapia Roulade 

4 filets tilapia, thawed and room temp.

1 cup frozen spinach, thawed and excess water squeezed out

8 oz. goat cheese, divided

6 oz. sour cream

salt & pepper

1 tsp basil

1 tsp chives (I used dried)

Preheat oven to 350*. If fish fillets are thick you can slice through them and make two fillets out of one, which make them roll much easier.

In a bowl combine 6 oz. of the goat cheese, the sour cream, spinach, herbs, and salt and pepper. Mix well.

Spoon and spread mixture on top of fish and roll each piece up. You can use toothpicks to keep the rolls together.

Place into a baking dish (spray dish or line with parchment paper first) and cover.

Bake about 25 minutes, or until fish is done.

tialpia roll2

Tarragon Bechamel

2 T butter

2 T flour  *Cornstarch for GF

4 T heavy cream or milk

1/4 cup chicken broth (plus more if needed for consistency)

salt & pepper

2 tsp tarragon

This fish definitely needed a sauce. As usual when I’m cooking I do a lot of it by eye. I try to make the measurements accurate for you, but with something like this it’s easy to eye-ball it and thicken, or thin, as needed. Bechamel is good for so many things but I find it rather bland and not quite worth all the extra calories. Hence, the tarragon. Believe me, it just makes it awesome.

Get the milk or cream and chicken broth bubbling in a small saucepan with the last 2 oz. of the goat cheese. Make sure the cheese melts and blends in. Add the tarragon. Make your roux and add it slowly, as needed.

*You can start out with your roux (1 part melted butter to one part flour) and add the cream and broth to it. It might actually be better to control your thickness this way, but what the heck, I always do things the hard way. Just make sure you allow time for the tarragon to get in there and do its thing 🙂 After that it’s all just about combining, whisking, (and not burning of course) and getting the sauce only as thick as you want it.

Serve it over the fish roulades.

I also put my roulades over some fresh garden tomato slices. Heaven!

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Fish Cakes with Cilantro-Lime Dip

You can use any kind of fish for this recipe, depending on what you like: crab, tuna, etc. I chose tilapia because a) I have a ton of it in my freezer, and b) it’s an extremely versatile and light fish, perfect for all kinds of dishes.  There really is no wrong way to make a fish cake, they are so easy. This recipe uses panko but you could substitute stuffing mix (and even bake it) for a heartier bite. This recipe makes one dozen 2-inch cakes.

fish cakes

Fish Cakes with Cilantro-Lime Dip

6 tilapia filets

1/4 cup chicken broth

EVOO for cooking (about 1/2 cup, divided)

1/2 onion, minced

small jalapeno pepper, minced

1 T dijon mustard

1 egg, slightly beaten

1 tsp dill weed

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1 cup panko, or other bread crumbs

Cilantro Lime Dip

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

1/2 cup sour cream

juice of 1/2 lime (about 1 T+)

dash chili powder

pinch of salt

1. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat with about 1 T EVOO and saute the onion  and jalapeno for about 4 minutes. Add the tilapia and break it down as it cooks, similar to browning ground beef. Remove from skillet and allow it to cool slightly.

2. Wipe out skillet and reheat with the rest of the EVOO.

3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the fish with the rest of the ingredients. Stir to mix together well. Make 2-inch patties.

4. Cook fish cakes in oil for about 3 minutes per side, until golden brown. Drain on paper towel

5. Make the dip by combining all of the dip ingredients well. Chill if possible. Serve with fish cakes.

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Pesto Panko Tilapia

This was definitely an experiment. I don’t mind so much when the dish turns out good, which thankfully it did. But I will say that because tilapia is difficult to fry anyway, I would recommend *baking this dish instead of frying. Also, you could use any fish, even salmon, but if you’re going for a white fish other than tilapia, try halibut.

Pesto Panko Tilapia

4 fish fillets

1/4 prepared pesto

1 cup panko

1/4 EVOO

1. Wash and dry fillets

2. Coat fish with pesto

3. Coat pesto-covered fish in panko

4. Carefully place in hot oil and allow to cook through, turning once.

5. Drain on paper towel before serving

*Bake at 350* – about 7 minutes per inch of fish until done. For a thin fillet like tilapia this would only take about 10 or 15 minutes.

The picture doesn’t do the flavor justice. If you like pesto then this is definitely a new and tasty way to make fish. I wasn’t disappointed with the overall taste- just the presentation. But once again, I am sure that baking the fish would yield much better results aesthetically 🙂

October Menu ~ 2012

Fall is without a doubt my favorite season. I love the crisp air and the fresh smells. Apples and pumpkins make their many appearances from dishes on the table to decorations around the house and in the yard. While this month I’m not focusing on the before-mentioned ingredients just yet, I am switching my menu to include more hearty soups and belly-filling meals. Below is my menu plan for the month with links for the recipes already posted. There are a lot of recipes I intend to try for the first time this month, and so as always, stay tuned for links 🙂

Week 1 ~ October 1st – 6th

Spinach Tomato Feta Frittata

Slow Cooker Sloppy Joes

Mexican Pizza

Roasted Salmon with Lemon-Herb Matzo Crust

Friday – Pizza Night

Chicken Schnitzel with Spaetzle

Week 2 ~ October 7th – 13th

Sunday Dinner – Roast Chicken, Carrot Mash Bake, Pesto-Parmesan Green Beans, Roasted potatoes & Biscuits

Muffaletta Calzone (with turkey pepperoni– optional)

Cheeseburger Salad

Taco Pizza (new recipe!)

Mexican Tilapia with Crock Pot Pinto Beans and Rice Fritters

Friday – Pizza Night

Ultimate Baked Beans (this is a meal!) with Corn & Wild Rice Muffins

Week 3 ~ October 14th – 20th

Sunday Dinner – Hearty Taco Chili

Black Bean Taquitos with Cucumber Salsa & Garlic Sour Cream

Turkey Salisbury Steaks with White Bean Mash

Quesadillas

Creamy Risotto and Shrimp with Green Peas

Friday – Pizza Night

Cheeseburgers

Week 4 ~ October 21st – 27th

Sunday Dinner – Roast Beef, Roasted Green Beans, 7-Grain Mix, Herb & Cheese Biscuits

Pasta and Lentil Soup with Homemade Crackers

Meatball Sub Cups with Butternut Squash Bake

Lime Chicken Tacos

Piccata Style Fish with Pasta and Lima Beans

Friday – Pizza Night

Romano-Crusted Chicken

Week 5 ~ October 28th – 31st

Sunday Dinner – Beef Stew with Biscuits

Zucchi Noodles with Turkey Meatballs & Marinara

Chicken Gyros and Salad

Cheese Enchiladas with Refried Beans and Salad

Breakfast:

Turkey Bacon & Egg Puffs

Eggs & Grits Bowl

Crock Pot Oatmeal

Jimmy Dean Delights (turkey sausage, egg white, and cheese breakfast sandwiches on a wheat english muffin)

Cheese Omelet with Whole Wheat Toast, Beef or Turkey Sausage and Banana slices

Other Sides:

Rosemary Sunchoke Chips (If I can find sunchokes!)

Homemade Crackers

Cheesy Rice Fritters

Pesto-Parmesan Green Beans

Crock Pot Pinto Beans

Refried Beans

Herb and Cheese Biscuits

Desserts:

Double Dark-Chocolate Hazelnut Banana Bread (I may use an Almond Butter instead of the Hazelnut)

Caramel Pear Pudding

Caramel Praline Tart

Oatmeal Cookies with Mini Chocolate Chips

Chocolate Chip Cream Cheese Bars

Go-To Granola Bars

Fish Newburg

We eat a lot of fish around here- mostly tilapia and salmon. When we lived on the island we were so blessed with fresh fish often. We’d have cobia, flounder, tuna, spanish mackerel, and blue fish to name a few. It was wonderful. Now that we’re inland the fish isn’t quite up to par. Hate to sound like a snob but going into the local grocers and looking at the “fresh” fish really disappointed me. So now it’s back to frozen fish, and an occasional whole salmon from Sams.

Some of our favorite ways to prepare fish is very simple and delicious. Our favorite way to prepare salmon is to pan-sear it with BBQ sauce. Click here for that recipe. I also like to poach it in foil with onions, celery, garlic, lemon juice and lots of dill and then serve it with this awesome sour cream and dill dressing. I just realized that I haven’t done that in a long time. I definitely will make it soon and post all about it. You’re gonna love it!

For the tilapia I like to pan-sear it in a little EVOO and lime pepper, and serve it up with some fresh homemade salsa. Click here for that recipe. One of my favorite sides to anything served/cooked in salsa (fish and chicken basically) is parmesan cous cous. Tilapia also makes great fish tacos 🙂

Making sure we eat fish at least once a week can get a little boring if I stick to the same 3 or 4 recipes. So this week I decided to do something a little different by way of a newburg sauce. Most Newburg recipes combine crab, lobster, clams, scallops, and shrimp: either just one, some, or as many different types of seafood as you want. Mine was very simple as I used only tilapia- but we found it to be very good for an occasional change (it’s quite fattening!).

Fish Newburg

4 tilapia fillets (feel free to add any seafood you’d like)

1  1/4 cup milk

4 T butter, divided

1/4 dry white wine

salt*

cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp paprika

1/4 cup flour

DIRECTIONS:

1. Saute fish in 2 T butter, sprinkle paprika on both sides during cooking. Set fish aside and keep warm.

2. In same skillet, pour in wine and allow to boil and deglaze, picking up all the bits leftover from the fish and butter.

3. Make a roux using the other 2 T butter and flour (I usually just melt the butter in the microwave and whisk the flour into it).

4. Have your milk ready. Add the roux to the wine, whisking constantly, then slowly add the milk (about 1/2 cup at a time) while continuing to whisk. Make sure all is blended and smooth. Sauce should be thick but not too thick. Add milk to your desired consistency, up to an additional 1/4 cup.

5. Add paprika and salt. *Here is where I added some of my Tuscan salt for a little extra something. I have to say that newburg sauce is too fattening to be worth it based on its bland flavor. It needs some sort of va-va-voom! Season as you like with whatever you like- you will not be sorry.

6. Pour sauce over warm fish and stir gently (with the tilapia I did not stir it together because the fish is so delicate).

7. Serve over brown rice.

Enjoy!