Monday, April 20, 2009

Fish for All- Sole Meuinere

Lots of people assume, because of my ownership with Wholesome Tummies, that I am a nutritionist or at the very least an expert in nutrition.

Well, let me say it here, my lovely blog followers. I am not. I majored in something Liberal Arts (I have to go and read my diploma again, since I forgot) at UCF. I do have a huge passion for all things food related and making sure my family eats as healthfully (is that a word?) as possible. (well, we do eat our share of chocolate cake, but at least it's MY chocolate cake so I know what's in it!).

One of the food items I continue to be clueless about is fish. I have this hang up about fish. I think I grew up always thinking it was some superfood. In my younger years, I forced myself to make it when I didn't really love as a more fully grown adult (eek!) I actually LOVE fish and would eat it often. The irony is, now that I love it, there are so many conflicting reports about the dangers vs. benefits of certain fish. I even downloaded an iphone app that tells me what fish I should buy based on fishing standards and mercury levels. (pretty cool!).

So as a mom, I want my children to get all the benefits from eating fish without the dangerous PCB's and mercury. As if that isn't enough- I want them to like it. I want them to like fish that isn't battered and deep fried. I want them to actually TASTE the fish and not a whole bunch of breading. But, I'm a realist. I don't think my 20 month old will eat poached salmon. I don't think my 6 year olds would eat steamed sea bass (actually, that is on the do not eat list..) I found this classic recipe for Sole Meuniere- which is basically sole, lightly dredged in flour, sauteed in a brown butter sauce..
Hmm..Fish..butter..saute..lemon. Ok sounds kid friendly and sophisticated too?

I didn't have sole so I used flounder instead. (was on the approved list according to my handy iphone app!). I also omitted the capers because ..well..because I hate them. I highly recommend this easy, elegant and kid friendly dinner. Start to finish took 20 minutes.

Sole Meuniere (Adapted from Cooks Illustrated, NY Times and Ina Garten)
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 fresh sole fillets, 3 to 4 ounces each
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tbl olive oil
  • 1 lemon sliced thin
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

Season fillets generously with salt and pepper and dredge them in flour.

Place a large skillets over medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. When hot, add 2 fillets to pan and cook, turning once, until the fish is golden and just cooked through, about 5-6 minutes.

Remove fish, wipe out the pan and repeat with remaining fish, 2 tbl butter and 1 tbl olive oil. Remove fish from pan.

Return the pan to low heat and whisk remaining 2 tablespoons of the butter into the pan. Add sliced lemons, lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of parsley to each pan and cook for 1 minute. Spoon the sauce over the fillets and serve immediately.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Boredom Baking- PB, Oatmeal, CC Cookies

Does anyone else ever do this? I cannot be the only one. When I am bored - I immediately think about what I should bake. I suppose its better than mindless eating but then again someone has to eventually eat whatever comes out of the oven..

And since that person is usually my husband I tend to bake things I know he likes. This is not exceptionally difficult- he is a very good willing taster to my creations but I know deep down, that he is a pretty simple tastes kinda guy. He doesn't like coconut, almond (any nuts except peanut, actually), lemon, carrot cake and basically anything too fussy. His favorites are the classics : Chocolate Chip Cookies, Cupcakes, Chocolate Cake and PB&Chocolate. So I rarely get to venture out to some of the more exotic recipes that I cut out. So... this cookie sort of appealed to both him and me...he gets his chocolate and peanut butter and I at least get some oatmeal! Besides, tomorrow when our toddler eats one, I'll feel less guilty since if it has oatmeal - it must be healthy!

This cookie is not so much some fancy for company cookie. Its more of a cookie jar, grab a few when you walk past it, cookie. And so what's wrong with that?

Peanut Butter-Oatmeal-Chocolate Chip Cookies
adapted from Dorie Greenspan

3 cups oatmeal
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 sticks butter
2 eggs
1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1 cup white sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup peanut butter
12 oz bittersweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350

Sift oatmeal, flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon together and set aside.

In mixer fixed with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until light and fluffy. Add peanut butter and mix until well combined. Add eggs 1 at a time, scraping down the sides after each addition. Add vanilla. Slowly combine dry ingredients into butter mixture. Add chocolate chips in by hand.

On a lined cookie sheet, spoon tablespoon sized balls onto the sheet- 2-3" apart. Flatten with back of spoon and bake 12-14 minutes or until light golden brown.

When removed from the oven let them sit on the cookie sheet for 2-3 minutes before transferring them to a rack(this will help them harden up a bit). They will continue to harden after cooled.