With the change in seasons comes all kinds of new activities. Fishing season in many locations is just beginning to open up. The “Catch of the Day” can be anything from the size of a swordfish to a petite minnow. Whatever it is, it is a triumph and should be treated with the respect it deserves
Fish is such a versatile entree. You can bake, broil, fry, steam, and grill it. The flesh of the fish is delicate and tender. Of course, if it is a humpback whale, it may take time to find appropriate recipes. But whatever the type, or size, preparing fish is relatively easy and
it does taste better because someone you know caught it.
Crappie and Bluegill - should be deboned. The tender filet can be covered in butter
cracker crumbs such as Ritz Crackers, in cornmeal or in flour and added spices.
Lightly panfry the little beauties until golden brown, drain on paper towels and serve.
Tartar sauce can be used or just a slice of lemon. A sprinkling of chopped parsley
over the fish and you have a beautiful platter to present.
Accompaniments: French fries, coleslaw, and fresh fruit. A feast for the eyes as well as the palate! Dessert idea: German Chocolate Cake slices
A whole fish adds drama to any dinner setting. It makes for a very impressive main
course for a formal dinner.
2-4 lb. whole fish, such as sea bass or trout
2 Tbs. melted butter
1 tbs. butter
1 onion, small, very finely chopped <r>
1 cup fresh breadcrumbs, white (non-seasoned)
4 ozs. fresh mushrooms, chopped
1 hard-cooked egg, peeled and chopped
a sprinkling of salt and pepper
1 tsp. fresh garden dill
2 tsp. chopped fresh curly parsley
Just a pinch of nutmeg
1/2 cup dairy sour cream
Just a sprinkling of sugar
1/2 lemon (for juice and for grated rind)
Sprinkling of salt and pepper
Chopped parsley as garnish
Filet your fish and remove all bones, leaving the body intact, including the head and
tail. Sprinkle the inside of the cavity with salt and pepper. Place to the side. Prepare the stuffing. Melt the butter in a pan and add the chopped onion and mushrooms. Saute gently until tender but not too soft. Stir in the remaining stuffing ingredients.
Using a spoon, spread the stuffing in the inner cavity of the fish as evenly as possible. Place the entire fish in foil that is coated with butter. Place the foil-covered fish on a cookie sheet. Bake in a preheated oven (350) degrees for 35-40 mins. Open the foil wrap about half way through the baking time, and baste with some melted butter.
Return to the oven with the foil left open. While the fish is baking, prepare the sauce.
Combine the sour cream, sugar, salt, pepper, grated rind, and lemon juice. Cook about 3-4 mins. just to heat - do not allow the sauce to boil. Remove the fish from the oven and the foil wrap, place on a plate, and pour the sauce over. Sprinkle the chopped parsley over the fish and add lemon slices to head and tail area.
Serve with a dinner salad with choice of dressing, baked potato with butter, and small June peas with sauteed onions. For dessert, try strawberry shortcakes topped with whipped heavy cream with a touch of vanilla.
A royal meal for royal guests!
Baked Halibut -
2-3 lb. halibut or whitefish
4 tbs. melted butter
3/4 cup grated American cheese
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 tbs. Parmesan cheese
2 cups whole milk
2 tbs. lemon juice (squeezed from a fresh lemon)
1 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
Remove the skin and bones from the halibut.
Wash fish in salted water and dry completely with paper toweling. Cut into serving-size portions. Place fish filets in well greased flat pan sized to accommodate them in a single-layer. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Broil the fish approximately 12 mins. about 2” from the flame.
Prepare a cream sauce using the melted butter, blending in the flour slowly and completely until the sauce is smooth. Slowly add the milk. Simmer the sauce for 4 mins. stirring constantly. Season with salt and pepper to taste<br?
Place the broiled fish filets in a well-buttered 2-quart casserole dish and brush with the lemon juice. Pour the cream sauce evenly over the fish. Sprinkle the shredded American cheese and the Parmesan over the top. Bake in a 350 oven for 20-25 mins. Bake until fish is lightly browned and flakes easily with a fork. Place under a broiler for 1 mins. to brown.
Serve with carrot/slaw salad, fresh, tender asparagus spears, and raspberry sherbet for dessert.
So grab those fishing poles and head out to the lakes, rivers, and streams.
Serve fish for dinner and be proud of your “catch of the day.”
©Arleen M. Kaptur 2002