It’s been tough on me to eat fewer grains this week. Turns out my own consciousness needs raising! I eat starches often.
I figure posting a recipe that is grain-free as well as meatless is a good fit for this, the week before Lent begins.
My husband always refused to eat fish until last summer when he had some tilapia with lots of spicy seasoning, pan-fried to perfection. Because he knows he should have more omega 3s in his diet, he allowed me to serve tilapia up to once a week. The boxed coating was easily reverse engineered (and spiced up even more), and then I found this recipe in a FAITH Magazine, published by the Diocese of Lansing. It’s even better!
Note: Unfortunately, I now have learned that tilapia has more omega 6s than omega 3s. It’s not what I’m looking for! The tilapia in Christ’s era was probably quite healthy, but farmed tilapia eats too much corn, which is high in omega 6s. Americans eat way too much omega 6. I need a new bland white fish that I can cut super thin and cover in seasoning, that is also safely and sustainably fished.
- 2 Tbs. garlic powder
- 2 Tbs. salt
- 2 Tbs. paprika
- 1 Tbs. onion powder
- 1 Tbs. black pepper
- 1 Tbs. dried oregano
- 1 Tbs. dried thyme
- 1 ½ tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste (I like it hot)
- 4 tilapia fillets (use other white, flaky fish to get your omega 3s!)
- In an empty spice jar or small bowl, make the blackening seasoning by combining all of the above dry spices.
- The mix stores great for as many fish dinners as you can cover.
- To cook the fish:
- Heat a heavy skillet (preferably cast iron) on high for a few minutes. Sprinkle some cornmeal on a plate with the seasoning on top and coat both sides of thin tilapia (or other mild fish) fillets with the mixture.
- You may want to add a little water to the fish if the cornmeal isn’t sticking.
- Sear fillets in hot skillet for about 2-3 minutes on each side (until they are blackened and cooked through).
Just one plate…no extra dishes for me! I coat them and get them right in the already heated pan, too, so I can just get all fishy once.
- Find more meatless recipes under the Recipes tab above; there’s a whole category there, from soups to bean dishes to salmon patties.
- Last year I hosted a Meatless Meals Carnival with even more options!
- Be challenged by what others are doing for Lent at this Lenten Link-Up opportunity.
- Want to decorate your home for Lent?
UPDATE: Fishy Information
My apologies for tossing information out about tilapia without sources. Here are some excellent resources about tilapia, farmed fish, eco-friendly fish and healthy-for-you fish:
- U.S. Farmed tilapia is “best choice” for the environment, says Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch. However, only 10% of tilapia sold in the U.S. is farmed here. Read The Nourishing Gourmet’s thorough post on why tilapia is still not a good choice.
- Research from Wake Forest University shows that farmed tilapia, catfish higher in omega-6 fatty acids than lean ground beef, doughnuts. This “could be a potentially dangerous food source for some patients with heart disease, arthritis, asthma and other allergic and auto-immune diseases that are particularly vulnerable to an “exaggerated inflammatory response.”
- So what fish SHOULD we eat?? Check out the Super Green Fish List from Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch: fish that are BOTH good for the environment and high in omega 3s. Unfortunately, there aren’t many basic, low-on-the-fishy-flavor white fish on there.
- You can also download a regional safe fish list, which is really helpful for me in the Great Lakes State. Tilapia is still on the happy list, but the omega 6s say otherwise.
- Kimi has a great post on what considerations to take to choose safe, healthy fish.