Monday, August 28, 2006

A Fish Story

Whenever I tell my mother that I had fish for dinner she seems strangely surprised -- shocked even. I guess its hard to believe I'd still want to eat fish after growing up with it always on the table. It would be correct to say that I dreaded having fish for dinner growing up, granted it was the freshest stuff anyone could ask for -- straight from the water to the table.

Now that I cook for myself, I have a new appreciation for fish simply because I know how to cook it. I never knew fish could taste so good if you didn't fry it. No matter what kind of fish it was (with some exception) my dad insisted it was best fried and that is how we always had it. He kindly spared my mom the task of post-dinner cleanup by frying it in his garage with his special breading blend.

While I was living at home this past fall, I took it upon myself to broaden the horizons somewhat and fry the fish myself. I simply replaced the predominantly corn meal batter with Italian breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese lightly pan fried in...olive oil. My version won the favor of my dad but I'm not sure he's adopted it.

I never fry fish at home but with these cod fillets I was wanting some crunch. I crusted one side with a light sprinkle of breadcrumbs and loads of fresh thyme. I thought it would be interesting to pair the lemony flavor of the fresh thyme with the rich flavor of coconut so I made coconut basmati to accompany it and served them up on a bed of sautéed cauliflower.

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