Thursday, June 24, 2010

Fast and Easy Summertime Food- Cornmeal Crusted Fish with Black Eyed Pea Salad

One of the most common search phrases that leads people to this little blog here is either "Cornmeal crusted Tilapia" or "Cornmeal Tilapia". Which the other day reminded me that I had plenty of fish in the freezer and hadn't used this recipe in awhile. I thought I would make and share the recipe again, since it seems to be such a popular one. And on the side I decided to make a really great salad. This is one of the first recipes I tried when Josh and I decided to try eating better, and I still love it. It's really delicious, first off, but it's also really quick to toss together; the corn and bell pepper make it particularly great for the summer. Who wants to spend forever in a hot kitchen during the summer months anyway? Not me. So a quick fish fry up and a no-cook salad is a sure-fire combo for summer cooking success.

Cornmeal Crusted Fish
Recipe from Everyday Food; Serves 4
Cornmeal crusted trout w/ black eyed pea salad

1/3 cup yellow cornmeal
2 teaspoons paprika
Coarse salt and ground pepper
4 (6-8 oz. each) skinless tilapia fillets
3 tablespoons olive oil

  • In a shallow dish, combine cornmeal and paprika; season generously with salt and pepper. Separate fillets into thick and thin sides. Dredge each piece in cornmeal mixture, patting it on to coat completely.
  • In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Cook as many pieces as will fit (without crowding) until golden brown and firm, about 2 minutes per side for thin pieces and 4 minutes per side for thick ones. Transfer to a plate; sprinkle with salt, if desired, and cover loosely to keep warm. Wipe skillet with a paper towel. Repeat with remaining oil and fish.
Black Eyed Pea Salad
Recipe from Everyday Food; Serves 4

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 can black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1 10 oz. package frozen corn, thawed
1 red bell pepper, ribs and seeds removed, finely diced
2 scallions, thinly sliced
Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • In a medium bowl, whisk mustard, vinegar and oil. Add all vegetables. Season with salt and pepper, toss to combine. Serve room temperature or slightly chilled.
My notes: I used trout that we had in the freezer from my father-in-law, so don't feel like you have to limit yourself to tilapia. I also used this recipe to make some great fish tacos before. Summer puts me in a mood for Mexican, so I'll probably be making those again soon too.

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