Fish in a Flash

I’ve written this recipe a few times, but wanted to update it a bit for everyone.  This is one of the easiest and fastest three-course meal recipes I’ve ever written and I love that it’s also incredibly versatile.  The basic premise is the same but the specific ingredients can be adjusted, depending on your preference and what you have available.  I hope you love this recipe as much as me!fishinaflash

  • I call this recipe “Fish in a Flash” because you’re only going to need 15 minutes to make this three-course meal for your family.  It’s full of flavor, cost-effective, and adjustable… what more could you want in a recipe?

Ingredients:

  • Fish (Feel free to use whatever fish is on sale or what you happen to have in your freezer)  In this case, I used two tilapia fillets, but I’ve made this dish with flounder, haddock, or any other light, flaky fish.  I haven’t used salmon, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t!
  • Crackers (Ritz crackers, Cheese crackers, club crackers, saltines, etc) crushed
  • Salt, Pepper, and any favorite seasoning (I like Paprika)
  • White wine (use whatever you have on hand or you can substitute water)
  • Broccoli flowerettes (I used a half bag of Broccoli-Wokly from the local grocer)
  • Bag of microwave brown rice (or your favorite starch)

Directions:

  • Spray a microwavable dish with cooking spray and arrange your fish fillets on dish.
  • In a small bowl, crush the crackers and mix in your seasonings.  Sprinkle fish with seasoned cracker crumbs.
  • Using your thumb as a stopper, gently “thumb” wine over the crumbs to lightly wet them  to create a coating on the fish.  You can also spoon the wine (or water) over the fish.
  • Top fish with broccoli flowerettes – I did them in a decorative fashion for these photos, but I typically just add a layer of broccoli over the fish.
  • Wet a paper towel and lay on top of the broccoli – this will help to steam the veggies.
  • Pop your dish into the microwave and cook on high for 10-12 minutes, until the fish is flaky and well-cooked.
  • Remove the fish from the microwave and allow to sit for 2 minutes.
  • Cook the 90-second brown rice in the microwave.
  • Remove rice and divide onto individual plates.
  • Serve meal with brown rice on the plate, topped with fish and vegetables.

This has been a staple in our menu selection for most of my 28-years of marriage.  I’ve adjusted and altered the recipe to the point where this is the cleanest and most simple rendition.  The original recipe (from my first year of marriage) included a half stick of butter and lots of lemon juice… this version is much healthier and the flavors really seem to pop.

I hope you’ll try this recipe and see how your family likes our Fish in a Flash.  It might just become a favorite in your house too!

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Recipe: Weeknight Chicken and Potatoes

I really love meals that don’t take a huge amount of effort on my part.  The oven does most of the work and I just transfer things from one place to another until dinner just “comes together”.  Such was the case with this meal.

I started with a few potatoes.  Much depends on how many mouths I’m feeding at any given meal, but I usually try to stick with the “one-and-a-half potato per person” rule if I’m just roasting these bad boys.  I diced them into chunks and then diced a half an onion to add some flavor.  Once these were done, I tossed both in a bowl with some balsamic salad dressing and laid them out on a baking sheet to roast for an hour or so in a 375 degree oven.

Since the potatoes were going to take awhile, I started the chicken a little after I had the potatoes in the oven.  I had purchased “thin cut chicken breasts” from the store, with the intention of using them for my chicken prosciutto rolls, but totally forgot to pick up the Boursin cheese.  Instead, I had 6 lovely thin chicken breasts that I decided to simply saute on the stove top.  I seasoned them, using more of the same balsamic salad dressing that I’d put on the potatoes, and then added more salt and pepper for good measure.  Using a heavy skillet, I sauteed the breasts in a little olive oil and butter until they were nicely browned and cooked through.  Since there were six breasts in the package, I did them in two shifts so they didn’t crowd the pan and cooked more evenly.  Once the outsides were nicely caramelized and toasty, I removed them to a platter and popped some foil on top to keep them warm. Note: I also put the platter into the oven for about 5-7 minutes before dinner was ready to reheat just a touch.

With all the yummy bits that were left in the pan, I thought a nice gravy was in order to make dinner to come together.  I put a pat of butter and a spoonful of flour into the skillet and let the fat/flour combine and sizzle a bit to cook off the raw floWeeknight ChickenNpotatoesur taste.  I then added a healthy helping of James River Meritage Red Wine (I chose the Meritage simply because that’s what I had in the fridge… I could have just as easily switched out the red wine for James River Reserve Chardonnay.  Use what you have available or what you like best) and whisked the gravy together to incorporate the flavors and pick up all the bits that had been left in the pan from the sauteed chicken.  After tasting the gravy, I adjusted the seasonings with some salt, pepper, and dry Italian seasonings until I was satisfied.

Oh, and I had thrown some broccoli florets on top of the potatoes (after the potatoes were almost finished) so we’d have a green vegetable for dinner… this was purely for my benefit, since none of my guys have any interest in eating green vegetables unless they’re coerced.

For serving, I put a single layer of the roasted potatoes/onions on the plate and topped them with a chicken breast and some pan gravy.   Obviously, this picture is of the plate I made up for my son, since there are two breasts on the plate and not a speck of green to be seen.   It was a really tasty dinner, even if I was the only one to eat the green stuff.  Maybe you’ll have better luck with your family if you top their broccoli with a little gravy?