Thursday, November 20, 2008

Blackened Fish Fillets

Ah, the joys of the empty nest. The question is no longer do I dare make blackened fish? Rather the question has become: catfish or tilapia? The decision was made for me at the fish counter. The tilapia was from China. There are so many tainted products from that country that I felt safer buying American catfish.

I was a little leery about “rubbing” spices on fish which is more fragile than beef or chicken, but it was no problem. I used a non-stick frying pan so there was no problem with the fish sticking to the pan. The spicy coating sealed in the juices so there was no problem with the fish being too dry.

The problem turned out to be the taste. It just wasn’t all that spicy. I’ve had blackened fish in restaurants that made my eyes tear and my nose run. This recipe is tame compared to restaurant offerings. And since I love spicy food, I’m forced to give a thumbs down to this recipe.

Verdict: Not bad, but I don’t think I’ll be making this again.

Blackened Fish Fillets

(source: Family Circle magazine, 10/17/08)

2 teaspoons paprika
½ teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled
½ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
4 catfish or tilapia fillets (1 ¾ pounds)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Blend paprika, oregano, onion powder, cayenne, salt and black pepper in a bowl.

Pat fish fillets dry with paper towels, then rub spice mixture into both sides fo fish.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add fillets and cook 4 minutes. Carefully flip over with a large spatula and continue to cook another 3 to 4 minutes, until cooked through and fish flakes easily with a fork.

Serve immediately.

Recycle: spice bottles, vegetable oil bottle

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