Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Patagonian Toothfish By Any Other Name

Before I start a fishy tail (or tale), a couple of announcements. First, I have been using red/bold text for links to other Websites. Beginning with this post, I will use blue/bold text to indicate links. This is more in keeping with the standard that most of us see.  Also, if you find any broken links, please let me know. And second, your comments are always appreciated. Just click on the "comment" link at the end of each post. I monitor the comments, and they will not appear on the blog until I bless them.

Now, for the tale of the Patagonian Toothfish. I was searching for a nice quick and easy fish recipe in my friend Liz's "Recipe from Home" collection and came across a recipe for Baked Fish with Moroccan Spices, which sounded good and satisfied the criteria of quick and easy. Liz recommended using either halibut or mahi-mahi. I on the other hand, was a bad person, and visited Mazzaro's, where I purchased two lovely fillets of Chilean Sea Bass.  I was bad for purchasing a fish that is being over-fished and not recommended if you are concerned about sustainability. While that is important to me, at times, I cave in, as I did this week. Now, to complete the circle, the actual name of the Chilean Sea Bass is, you guessed it, Patagonian Toothfish. The name change was a marketing gimmick to make the fish sound more appealing. Can you imagine going to a restaurant and ordering Patagonian Toothfish? Click on the link to read the Wikipedia entry if you so desire. 

The fish came out great, with wonderful spicy flavors. Since my fillets were two inches thick, I had to increase the cooking time from the recipe (written for 1" fillets). I served it with another of Liz's recipes for Fresh Spinach with Cumin. The spinach was a nice complement to the fish. 

Here are the recipes (thank you Liz):

Baked Fish with Moroccan Spices
Serves 8

Olive Oil
8 6-8 oz fish fillets, each about 1-inch thick (halibut or mahi-mahi)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Salt and Pepper to taste
Chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
Lime wedges (optional)

Brush rimmed baking sheet with oil. Brush both sides of fish with oil. Mix ground cumin, coriander, cinnamon and cayenne in medium bowl. Rub spice mixture all over fish. Sprinkle fish with salt and pepper. Place fish on prepared baking sheet. (Can be prepared 4 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate).

Preheat oven to 400-degrees. Bake fish without turning until just opaque in center, about 12 minutes. Transfer fish to platter. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and garnish with lime wedges. 
(Dick's Comments: The cilantro and lime added a bright complementary flavor to the dish, so I highly recommend these optional items)

Fresh Spinach with Cumin
Serves 4

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 lbs. fresh spinach leaves, washed
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

Heat olive oil in a large skillet and add the spinach, salt, pepper and cumin. Stir as the spinach wilts. Cook and stir over high heat until the spinach is wilted the the moisture has evaporated. Do not overcook. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Yummy !

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