Dinner tonight: Alaskan Cod with Roasted Garlic & Asiago Crust

As many of you know, our family tries to eat healthy not only for ourselves, but for our planet.  Buying fish is a dicey proposition these days, but thanks to the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch app for the iPhone, buying fish has gotten easier.  That said, it’s often hard to determine the source for some of the fish at your local grocery, fishmonger or big box store. Jon and I are committed label readers and not shy about asking the store’s staff about the source of their fish.  We were pleased to find wild-caught Alaskan Cod at our local Costco, in the freezer department. The brand is Orca Bay Seafoods, and they appear to be pretty committed to sustainable fishing.

I’ll climb down off the soapbox now, and produce a recipe:

Alaskan Cod with Roasted Garlic & Asiago Crust – Serves 4

Ingredients

Four Cod Fillets – thawed, rinsed and patted dry. (I recommend Orca Bay Seafoods Frozen if fresh is not available)

Peeled cloves from two small heads of roasted garlic

1/2 cup grated Asiago cheese

1/3 – 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs

No-stick spray or olive oil

Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

Equipment

Small food processor or similar appliance (I used the chopper accessory to my Braun Hand Blender)

9 x 7 baking sheet

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 375 ?. Spray the pan with no-stick spray or brush with olive oil.

Place the roasted garlic cloves in the bowl of a food procesor and process until finely chopped.  Add cheese and process to combine.  Add breadcrumbs and process to combine.

Season both sides of the fish fillets with salt and pepper.  Pack a layer of crust onto one side of the fillet, then place crust down on the baking sheet.  Pack additional crust on the top side of the fish. Repeat for the other three fillets.

Place in a preheated oven and bake for 15-20 minutes until fish is firm and cooked through.  Serve immediately.

Dinner Last Night: Potato & Kale Soup with Sausage

This is based on a traditional Portuguese soup that uses Chorizo. We use a package of ground turkey, seasoned with Penzey’s Italian Sausage Seasoning. Vegetarian Chorizo would work, if you don’t want to use the pork stuff.

Amounts are rough, but if you are a stickler for measurements, try this version at Epicurious.com.

In a 6-8 quart pan, sautee the following in olive oil:

  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 large carrot, sliced
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced

When the onion is translucent, add:

  • 2 large baking potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 4-6 cups chicken stock / broth (low sodium)
  • 4 cups water

Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and add:

  • 3/4 – 1 lb. cooked turkey italian sausage
  • 2 T dried parsley
  • several grinds of fresh pepper

Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the potatoes are soft.  Using a stiff ladle, mash up some of the potatoes in the pan to add a creamy appearance to the soup.  Add 4-6 cups chopped kale. Let simmer a few minutes longer until the greens ‘collapse’.

Taste for seasoning and serve with crusty bread and a salad.  Pass the hot pepper flakes to anyone that wants a little zing to the soup.


What to do with all that chicken

We love soup, and with everyone being sick lately, I’ve been making a lot if it. However, a family can only eat so much chicken salad before there is a revolt.

Enter my old friend, the 365 Ways to Cook Chicken cookbook. Chicken & Rice Loaf with Mushroom Sauce was a great way to use up cooked chicken and rice. It’s kind of old-fashioned (think chicken croquettes), but was tasty, filling and NOT chicken salad. About the only tweaks I’d make is adding a bit of onion flavor and using large, not extra large, eggs. The extra moisture from the larger eggs increased the baking time by about 15 minutes.

The mushroom sauce called for beef broth, but I subbed chicken broth like usual. Veggie broth would work well, too.

I could even see replacing the chicken with veggies, tofu, or another vegetarian protein for a meatless dinner. Regardless, we now have another use for leftover soup chicken and that makes this home cook very happy indeed.

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