Welcome to Second Ferment! Wine pairs well with life ... and food, travel, people, work and play. Grab a glass and join me as I explore the wine scene in Ottawa, Canada, and beyond. Love hearing from my readers, so please leave a comment or drop me a line. Cheers! - Bethany

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

March (Mid-Week Meal) Madness

The drive home is always the same in our family. Pick up the Doodle first. Without so much as a "hi, how was your day?" she's demanding to know what we're having for dinner. Because the response we give dictates how cheerful / conversational she will be in return. (Yeah, it's a fun ride home.)

Tonight I braced myself for the usual groans of displeasure. "Baked fish."

Fish tacos - even as leftovers, still delicious
But instead of just complaining about the menu choice, Doodle suggested jazzing it up: how about fish tacos? And you know what? Turns out it wasn't that crazy an idea after all. I found a quick and easy recipe and within the hour, we were noshing on a delicious, flavourful and kid-friendly meal. I couldn't get over it, and kept exclaiming, "Wow, this is good. I mean, this is really good. This is GREAT!" The silence at an otherwise rowdy dinner table and the subsequent empty plates assured me that yes, the kids liked it, too.

It can be done, folks!

Fish Tacos - serves 4
(adapted from Shortcuts: 130 Almost-from-Scratch Recipes by Weight Watchers)

1 lb firm white fish, cut into inch-thick chunks
(we had cod, but would also be good with halibut, maybe even tilapia?)
1/4 cup light or fat-free mayo
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 tsp lime juice
1/4 tsp each of garlic powder, chili powder, Old Bay Seasoning
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425F. Coat a baking sheet with nonstick spray.

Mix mayo, seasonings and lime juice together. Place cornmeal in a separate, shallow dish. Combine the fish and the mayo mixture until evenly coated. Gently roll each piece in cornmeal until covered. Place chunks on baking sheet and lightly coat with nonstick spray. Bake until browned and cooked through, about 10 min.

Place chunks of fish in hard or soft taco shells (heated according to directions) and add toppings: shredded cheese, lettuce, corn kernels, guacamole, sour cream, black olives ... sky's the limit. I like a fresh salsa, myself:

B's Own Salsa Verde - serves 4
1/2 each red and green pepper, chopped
1/2 red onion, chopped
1/2 tomato, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
fresh cilantro, chopped (optional)

Combine all ingredients in a glass bowl and let sit while the fish cooks. Spoon liberally on your tacos.

Pairings: We had ours with a couple of ice-cold Coronas, but I could see this going really well with a crisp white, either a torrontes, sauvignon blanc or unoaked chardonnay. Fragrant and sweet would also make a good match: gewurztraminer, or a blend like Obsession or Strewn Two Vines.

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