Fish & Seafood

This is a crazy easy dish to make and tastes pretty damn fine for having so few ingredients.The only oddball thing is that you will need to search out some tuna packed in oil.

1 12 ox box whole-wheat rotini or penne
2 cans oil-packed tuna
2 Tbs whole grain, spicy mustard
2-3 cups frozen veggies, thawed (I used peas and corn)



Cook the pasta until al dente. When done, drain the pasta and reserve about a cup or so of the pasta water.

While the pasta cooks, drain the tuna’s packing oil into a small skillet and flake the fish into pieces.  Add the mustard to the oil and heat over med-low heat.

After draining pasta return to the pot and add the veggies and the oil and mustard mixture.  Add some of the reserved pasta water and cook over medium heat until the mustard oil and pasta water form a sauce that begins to cling to the pasta.  Serve immediately.

Serves 4

Posted by Mike on Thursday, September 15, 2011 at 06:32 PM
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I very rarely watch cooking shows where it’s a contest. Due to time, ego and ingredient restraints, you can get some really jacked-up recipes.  The inspiration for this came from Top Chef.  It sounded damn tasty and what’s more, was surprisingly easy to modify into something that could actually be cooked up in the midwest. Fast too.  Most of the actual work is in the alarmingly easy preparation and the cooking time is as close to nonexistent as it’s gonna get while still using a frying pan.  The secret is in the condiments and honestly I’ll try just about anything with Rooster sauce in it.


3 Tbs Mayonaise
1 Tbs Sriracha (Rooster) sauce
1 small red onion, thinly sliced (a mandoline if you’re consistency challenged like I am)
3 Tbs rice vinegar
1/2 Tbs sugar
1/4 tsp salt
3 Tbs soy sauce
1-2 Tbs lime juice
1 anchovy filet, chopped (optional)
2 smallish catfish fillets (about 1/3 lb each)
2 toasted ciabatta or hoagie rolls

Stir the mayo and rooster sauce together, then cover and toss in the fridge.

Whisk together the rice wine vinegar, sugar and salt, then pour into a ziplock bag.  Toss the onions into the bag and squeeze out all the air before sealing, then toss into the fridge next to the mayo.

Combine the soy sauce, lime juice, anchovy in a quart-sized freezer bag, Add the fish, squeeze out the air and seal; then toss in the fridge so it can join the condiment party.  Let marinade for 20 or so minutes.

Heat a skillet over high heat and dry the fish on some towels.  Once it’s good ‘n’ hot, add 2 Tbs canola oil and sear the filets (1-2 minutes per side worked for me).  Spread the mayo on both sides of the bun and place a heaping bunch of the pickled onions on the top half of each bun before serving.

catfish samich

Note:  The pickled onions are crazy delicious. They’re gonna be going onto a lot of sandwiches around these parts from now on and may even be eaten by themselves.  The Rooster mayo is spicy, but not as bad as you’d think. If you’ve got tender tastebuds, add the rooster by quarter tablespoons.  The china was liberated from the fabulous Wright Quad Cafeteria at Indiana University.

Posted by Mike on Monday, July 05, 2010 at 09:59 AM
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I don’t know why this is called Cajun Shrimp Stew except for maybe the original recipe calls for okra which just blech, ok?  I’m a good little vegetable consumer but okra and beets are two that I will never eat...I’m not so fond of eggplant either but neither here nor there. 

One of my friends ate a bowl of this at my house, liked it and revised it a bit.  She adds sausage and chicken to make it more of a semi jambalaya.  It’s a recipe you can do pretty much what you want with really.  It’s just so freakin’ tasty and easy and pretty much image everybody has most of the ingredients on hand.


1 small-ish onion, chopped
3 or 4 or 5 celery stalks, chopped
5 TBSP butter
5 TBSP flour
1 packet G. Washington Gold
white pepper
1/8 - 1 tsp cayenne pepper (to taste basically)
1 TBSP dry parsely or 3 TBSP fresh
1/2 tsp thyme—I use powdered.  You can use fresh but I never have it so I don’t know how much.  I don’t use regular dry thyme because it doesn’t get soft when it cooks and I don’t like how it kind of pokes your mouth.  If you do use it, use 1 tsp and kind of crush it up a bit.  Powdered thyme is stronger, obviously.

2 cans low or no sodium chicken broth
2 cans (or more if you like) minced or chopped clams with liquid
1 large can stewed tomatoes
Frank’s RedHot Hot Sauce

1 lb shrimp, cleaned, tails off—I just use frozen large size shrimp thawed with tails removed


Melt butter and add the onions and celery.  Cook until translucent.  Combine flour, G. Washington and spices.  Add all at once to celery and onion.  Cook and stir 5 minutes.  Add broth and clams with liquid.  Add tomatoes and juice, breaking up tomatoes with your fingers.  Bring just to a boil.  Season with tabasco and RedHot to taste.  You can make it as hot or mild as you like.  Turn off the heat and add the thawed shrimp.  Let stand 20 minutes or so.

I serve it in a bowl over hot white rice.  Serves 4-6 people depending on how much you pig down.

You really have to try this though.  Whatever you add...chicken, sausage, yucky’s just a really quick to make, low prep, tasty dish.  Since you really don’t have too much of a recipe to follow, you can add, subtract and adjust pretty much every ingredient.  I love this stuff.

Posted by Donna on Sunday, May 02, 2010 at 02:07 PM
Filed in: Fish & SeafoodSoups & Stews • ◊ Permalink
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This would actually work a bit better with a flatter fillet such as Sole, Perch or even Catfish, but Tilapia is cheap, the fillets are perfectly sized portions and they thaw really fast for a quick meal.


2 Tilapia fillets (about 1/4 lb each)
1 egg white
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese (the stuff in the green shakey bottle is fine)
1 Tbs garlic powder
1/4 tsp ground cayenne (or whatever flavors you like)
1 Tbs Canola or peanut oil

Heat oil in skillet over med-high heat.  Put the egg white into a bowl large enough to fit your fillet.  Combine Parmesan, garlic powder and, cayenne.

Dry each fillet, then dip both sides into egg white.  Dredge in Parmesan mixture and pan fry until browned on the first side before flipping for a total cooking time of 5-6 minutes.


China: Rose Garden by Lenox

Posted by Mike on Wednesday, April 28, 2010 at 06:48 AM
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I’ve seen various things labeled as ‘Salmon Roasts’ whilst wandering through my local Grocery Ranch™ locations and they look damn tasty, but not so tasty that I’m willing to spend fourteen bucks a pound. I figured that i could make something close to it that was cheaper, tastier and more attractive. One out of three isn’t bad for a first attempt ‘cos at least I know what I need to do differently next time.  This is how I made it last night.  I’ll mention the things I would do differently at the end.DSCF2773

Stuffed Tilapia

4 Tilapia filets
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups spinach, stems removed and roughly chopped
1 Tbs grated parmesan cheese
2 tsp assorted herbs (I used oregano, thyme and tarragon)
3-4 Tbs Panko
olive oil for sauteing


Preheat oven to 400 and spray a baking pan with cooking spray.

Heat oil in a medium sized skillet over medium heat.  Add the garlic and saute until just getting golden.  Toss in the spinach.  It looks like a buttload right now but in about 40 seconds its gonna shrink down to nothing.  Once any moisture from the spinach is cooked off, add the parmesan, cheese and panko.  toss around until it’s all well mixed.

Match your fish fillets for size.  Place one fillet from each pair flat side up on the baking pan and top with half the spinach mixture. Cover with the other fillet and toss in the oven about 8 minutes.  Use a wide spatula to transfer to plates to minimize the chance that the fillets will break up before eating.

Notes and things I’d change:
Yeah, I know that the eponymous “they” say to bake your fish for 10 minutes per inch of thickness, but I think that this 1) results in dry and nearly inedible fish that 2) is directly responsible for why so many people don’t want to eat fish unless it’s coated in gluey batter and Fry-O-Later’ed by slacker teens at the local Captain Silver’s or served up in a diced and re-formed square abomination at McHardeeCastles.  Now, on to the things I’d change…

I originally wanted to make these as pinwheels. Tilapia fillets are way too short and thick in places to roll up.  Sole or Flounder would be better for that.  The two small Tilapia fillets did make for a perfect, if slightly largish serving each though.

If stacking the fillets, I’d hold back 1/3 of the stuffing and use it to top the fillets. I’d keep the Panko out also and sprinkle it on top of the fish before baking.

If you use a more flavorful fish use a more flavorful dry cheese like Feta, Bleu or Gorgonzola

China:  Carmella by Lenox

Posted by Mike on Thursday, March 11, 2010 at 11:44 AM
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This recipe came about through a happy accident.  I think it’s the best fried fish I’ve ever had.  I had a beer batter fish fry recipe that I really like but I couldn’t find it.  I decided to wing it.  We don’t drink and I had forgotten to go to the liquor store to buy a can of beer.  I was about to run to the convenience store for a bottle of carbonated water when I thought, “Maybe a Coke would work here.” So I tried it and well, just plain yum.


For fish soak:
2 eggs, beaten
2-3 cups milk - enough to cover fish
1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
1 tsp dried parsley
1/4 tsp each garlic and onion powders

Combine all ingredients, add fish and soak for an hour or so turning fish once or twice.

For batter:
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper, preferably white pepper.
1 tsp Old Bay seasoning.
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup cola - Coke, Pepsi, etc.  (I use diet caffeine free because it’s what I drink)
1-2 pounds cod loins.  (You want the loins.  They’re thick and consistent in size so they all cook at once.  Haddock loins are good too but I prefer codfish.)

1/2 of one bag Dixie Fry (Or other dry seasoned flour for dredging fish.  I think Dixie Fry is the awesomest stuff ever next to G. Washington’s broth.)

Heat a deep fryer to 375°.  If using a pan on the stove, make sure you use a deep pot with at least 5-7” of oil.


Mix dry ingredients except for Dixie Fry.  Add coke.  Batter will fizz and be about the consistency of pancake batter...maybe a bit thicker. 

One piece at a time, dredge fish in Dixie Fry and place on paper plates to allow the seasoned flour to set a bit.  Using tongs, dip fish in batter one piece at a time.  Allow excess to drip off.  Place on plate while you do the other pieces. 

Fry 2 or 3 pieces at a time for approximately 15 to 20 minutes.  Fish will turn opaque and break apart relatively easy.


I like to make homemade french fries when I fry fish.  Bill loves them and they just go with the fish really well.  The cola really adds a very nice flavour to the batter, way better than beer I think.  I’m positive you will enjoy this batter recipe.

And finally, yum yum yum.

Posted by Donna on Sunday, June 14, 2009 at 12:54 AM
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Along with a penchant for blasphemy and a distaste for religious tchotckes, my tragic catholic upbringing left me with an eternal loathing for tuna-noodle casserole and most other recipes that call for canned fish.  This one’s pretty tasty though.  Must be the lack of noodles and cream of mushroom soup. 


2 1/4 Cups leftover cooked salmon, or 3 six ounce cans boneless skinless salmon, drained
1 Cup Panko breadcrumbs
1/4 Cup Chopped yellow onion
1 Egg, beaten
1/4 Cup Whole milk
1 Tbs Lemon juice
1 tsp Lemon zest
3 Tbs Chopped cilantro
1/4 tsp Dried dill
1/4 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp pepper

For lemon dill sauce

1/4 Cup Mayonnaise
1/4 Cup Sour cream or plain yogurt
1 Tbs Lemon juice
1/4 tsp Dried dill
1/4 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp sugar

salmon and dill Preheat oven to 350.

Combine all ingredients but those for sauce in bowl and mix well.  Place into a oiled 9x5 loaf pan and pat down.  Bake for 40 minutes or until the loaf is firm and the top is becoming browned.  Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes before removing from pan and slicing. 

While the loaf is cooking combine ingredients for sauce and stir until smooth and all lumps have disappeared.  Serve at room temperature.

Posted by Mike on Tuesday, March 27, 2007 at 07:10 PM
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1 pound sea scallops
1/4 cup flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large shallot, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup white wine
1 cup chicken broth or stock
1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes in juice
1/4 teaspoon saffron threads
1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
12 fresh basil, shredded or torn
1 lemon, zested

Lightly coat the sea scallops in flour seasoned with salt and pepper. Discard remaining flour.

Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil and butter. When butter melts into oil, add scallops. Brown scallops 2 minutes on each side, then remove from pan.

Add an additional drizzle of olive oil to the pan and add the garlic, shallots, and crushed red pepper flakes. Reduce heat a little and saute garlic and shallots 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add wine to the pan and free up any pan drippings. Reduce wine 1 minute, then add stock, tomatoes and saffron threads. When liquids come to a bubble, add shrimp and cook 3 minutes. Return scallops to the pan and cook shrimp and scallops 2 to 3 minutes longer. Transfer shrimp and scallops to a warm serving dish and top with basil and lemon zest. May be served over angel hair pasta or just a nice loaf of Italian bread.
Posted by Donna on Friday, December 09, 2005 at 10:51 AM
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1 cup mayonaise
1 1/2 tbsp sweet pickle relish
1 tbsp minced onion
1 tbsp lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste

Mix mayonaise, sweet pickle relish, and minced onion. Add salt and pepper to taste. Fold in the lemon juice.

Place in a sealed container and refrigerate at least one hour before serving. This tartar sauce can be stored for up to three days in the refrigerator.
Posted by Donna on Monday, October 24, 2005 at 02:25 PM
Filed in: Fish & Seafood • ◊ Permalink

1 medium onion, chopped
3 or 4 stalks celery, chopped
? stick of butter
? cup flour (? cup if you want it thicker)
Saute onion and celery in butter until tender-crisp. Add flour all at once. Cook and stir 3 minutes.

2 cans chicken broth or about 3 cups homemade stock/broth
2 cans minced or chopped clams with liquid (you can do this with 8-12 small whole fresh clams as well)
1 large can whole tomatoes broken up with liquid

A few drops of Tabasco
1-2 tsb Chili powder
Several squirts of Durkee's Red Hot
Garlic powder

Bring to a boil and let simmer 5 minutes or so. Turn off heat.

Add 1 pound fresh or frozen shelled and deveined extra large shrimp. The heat from the pot will cook it regardless of fresh or frozen state without turning the shrimp to rubber.

Taste and re-seaon carefully. The hot stuff gets hotter as it sits. This is much better made a day ahead and reheated. Serve over rice.
Posted by Donna on Sunday, January 23, 2005 at 02:42 PM
Filed in: Fish & Seafood • ◊ Permalink

6-8 Cod Loins or Haddock ½-1" thick, cut into uniform pieces.

Soak fish in milk to cover, at least 1 hour.
Preheat oil to 375°.

Seasoned flour (I use Dixie Fry)

1 C Flour
½ Tsp Baking powder
1 C Beer
Salt and Pepper
1Tsp Old Bay Seasoning
Pinch each: Garlic salt, Onion salt, Parsley.

Mix together all ingredients until it resembles a pancake-like batter.

Dip fish in Dixie Fry then in batter. Allow excess to drip off and deep fry for 5 minutes per side, until golden brown and fish flakes when broken with fork.

Editors Note: This is far and away the best way to batter fish I've ever used. The taste is awesome and it's perfectly crunchy.
Posted by Donna on Monday, April 05, 2004 at 12:03 PM
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1 1/2 pounds jumbo shrimp, about 20 shrimp, deveined, peel intact
1 teaspoon coarse salt
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs, 3 handfuls
1/2 cup prepared horseradish
1/2 cup half-and-half or light cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper sauce or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons chopped parsley, for garnish
4 leaves Romaine hearts

Preheat a grill pan over medium high heat.

Loosen shells of shrimp and butterfly them cutting down the devein line of the back of the shrimp. Toss shrimp with 1 teaspoon coarse salt. Combine melted butter with lemon juice and zest. Using a pastry brush, cover shrimps with lemon butter and set on hot grill. Grill shrimp 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until pink and firm.

In a bowl, combine bread crumbs, horseradish, cream and salt. Let the cream soak into the bread crumbs 2 minutes. Loosen bread crumbs with a fork. Stir in cayenne sauce or cayenne and combine with sour cream. Spoon equal amounts of sauce into ramekins on individual plates or a dip bowl in the center of 1 large platter.

Arrange 5 grilled shrimp down the center of 1 leaf of romaine lettuce. Serve shrimp with seafood forks alongside dipping sauce.
Posted by Donna on Friday, March 05, 2004 at 01:07 AM
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8 pieces flounder filet
1 lb crap meat
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
3 tbsp mayonnaise
1 egg beaten
4 tsp butter
1 tbsp lemon juice

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Grease shallow roasting pan.

Wash fish. Pat dry.

Combine crab meat, cayenne, green pepper, mayonnaise, and egg.

Place 4 pieces of fish in roasting pan. Place two heaping tablespoons of crab mixture on each piece of fish. Top with remaining fish. Place slice of butter on each fish. Sprinkle with lemon juice.

Bake 30 minutes. Baste. Broil 5 minutes. Baste. Broil 5 more minutes.

Makes 4 servings.
Posted by Donna on Wednesday, March 03, 2004 at 09:43 PM
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1 lb boneless catfish
1 cup corn meal
1/2 cup flour
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp onion salt
2-3 cups shortening
lemon wedges (optional)

Heat shortening to 365 degrees in deep fryer or deep saucepan.

Combine corn meal, flour, salt, pepper, garlic and onion salt in paper or plastic bag.

Put 3-4 pieces of fish in bag. Shake until well coated. Fry fish until brown and tender. Garnish with lemon wedges, if desired.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.
Posted by Donna on Wednesday, March 03, 2004 at 09:28 PM
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1 (5-ounce) lobster tail
12 shrimp, fresh or frozen, thawed
1 small bunch crab claws
1 cup Ritz cracker crumbs
Hungarian pepper
1 pound large mushrooms

Olive oil
10 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup green pepper, chopped
4 green onions, chopped
1 egg
1 cup water
1/4 pound melted butter
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. BBQ or boil all seafood: lobster 5 to 10 minutes, shrimp 3 to 5 minutes, crab 3 minutes. Remove shells from the seafood and chop. Chop all seafood and set aside. Mix together Ritz cracker crumbs, Hungarian pepper, salt and pepper and set aside. Carefully remove the stems from the mushrooms, chop finely and set aside. Add olive oil to a saute pan and add garlic. After 1 minute, add the chopped green pepper and onion. Continue to saute for 2 to 3 minutes. Add chopped mushroom stems and saute until cooked. Saute over medium heat until the mixture is reduced. Add the seafood mixture and mix well. Remove from the heat and stir in the Ritz crumb mixture. In a separate bowl blend the egg and water. Add the egg/water mixture to the pan and mix well. Stuff each mushroom cap with a small portion of the seafood mixture. Brush with melted butter and top with cheese. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
Posted by Donna on Wednesday, March 03, 2004 at 10:59 AM
Filed in: Fish & Seafood • ◊ Permalink

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