Breaking out of my post-vacation food funk with style…
Zucchini-wrapped cod with tarragon and lemon [serves 1]
1 T room-temperature butter or olive oil [or a combination], plus 1/2 T for topping
1 medium-sized zucchini [you’ll only use about 1/3 of it]
5 oz fresh [or frozen and thawed] cod, about 1″ thick, rinsed and patted dry
coarse salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
1/2 to 1 t dried tarragon, to taste [if fresh is available, use 1/2 to 1 T]
freshly squeezed lemon juice, to taste
extra virgin olive oil
1/2 T dry white cooking wine
lemon wedges, to serve
Preheat oven to 425° F. Coat a piece of aluminum foil large enough to enclose the fish steak generously with the 1 T butter/olive oil.
With a mandoline [or chef-worthy knife skills], slice the zucchini lengthwise into 4 or 5 thin ribbons, depending on the size of your fillet. Very lightly coat in olive oil and arrange on prepared foil in a row, overlapping long sides slightly.
Sprinkle both sides of the fish with salt, pepper, tarragon and lemon juice. Place the fillet atop the arranged zucchini ribbons, centering it. Fold the sides of the zucchini rectangle up and over the fish, forming a parcel. Press gently to adhere and sprinkle the parcel with a bit more salt, pepper, tarragon and lemon juice. Top with the remaining 1/2 T butter or olive oil, and wine.
Wrap foil around the fish, folding the edges to seal well. Place on a baking sheet and bake 15 minutes for thinner fillets or 20 minutes for steaks 1″ thick or more. Serve with lemon wedges.
Several years ago I fell in love with a recipe for fish baked in a foil pouch from Fannie Farmer – my anchor cookbook. I’ve tried many of my own variations on the basic recipe, and it hasn’t failed me yet. Alongside balsamic and olive oil-dressed mixed greens and a lemon balsamic Israeli couscous salad with parsley and scallions, this meal is both filling and nutritious.
Incidentally, March is National Nutrition Month®. This year’s theme – Eat Right – focuses on making healthy, informed food choices and being physically active every day to promote optimum and long-lasting health for all. For more information about National Nutrition Month or the American Dietetic Association, check out www.eatright.org.
p.s. I’ve added a Recipe Index page for easy access to any recipes posted on squirrel bread. I’ve optimistically added categories for things I would like to post in the future, so stay tuned!