Wednesday, November 2, 2011

recipes: oven-roasted tilapia with potatoes

oven roasted tilapia with potatoes (photo: mine)
I've been trying out some new cookbooks, and tonight I tweaked the recipe for Trota al Forno con Patate (Oven-Roasted Trout with Potatoes) from the William-Sonoma Savoring Tuscany (which I originally checked out of the library but then promptly ordered online used for $2.70). I didn't have on hand trout or rosemary (the latter of which I am not a fan, anyway), so I substituted tilapia and basil. Conscious of calories and fat, I also reduced the amount of oil I used. The result? Easy and amazing. Here's the recipe:

5 small basil leaves
4 cloves minced garlic (reserved some for the side vegetable, see below)
salt and pepper
1.5 pounds potatoes, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (in a small bowl with a brush)
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
1 pound tilapia (4 fillets)
olive oil cooking spray
sprinklings of dried basil

Preheat the oven to 375F. Mince the garlic and basil leaves, mix together, divide into fourths and set aside. Slice the potatoes and layer the slices slightly overlapping in rows in a 9x13 pan coated with cooking spray. Brush this first layer with olive oil and sprinkle with the garlic-basil mixture and salt and pepper. Dot with 1 tablespoon of the cut-up butter. Then layer the remaining potato slices, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with another quarter of the garlic-basil mixture, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and dot with the remaining butter. Spray the potatoes with a thin layer of cooking spray, cover the pan and bake for 20 minutes; then uncover and bake for 20 more minutes or until almost tender. After the 40 minutes, take the pan out and lay the fish on top of the potatoes; brush the fish with olive oil and sprinkle with another quarter of the garlic-basil mixture and salt and pepper (I gave it all a light coat of cooking spray for good measure). Put the pan back in the oven (uncovered) and bake until he fillets are done (it took mine about 15 minutes). When done, take it out of the oven and let it sit for about 10 minutes before serving.

I served the fish and potatoes with zucchini, which I cut in half the long way, brushed with oil and topped with the last quarter of the garlic-basil mixture. I slid it into the oven at the same time as the fish, and took it out about five or ten minutes after. When I served it all, I also added a small handful of spinach leaves with balsamic vinegar and topped with a couple of chopped olives stuffed with blue cheese to each plate.

Again--easy and amazingly tasty.

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