June 15, 2015

Best Fish Recipe Ever

Posted in Fish at 6:54 pm by Sheila OConnell

This is a great and easy recipe for baked fish. I used frozen Mahi Mahi filets (thawed) but fresh fish would work just as well. I image cod, haddock or any firm white fish will work. We had it with Jasmine rice and steamed asparagus. Works best if you drink a nice white wine or wine spritzer while you prepare the dinner. We had a Chateauneuf du Pape with the meal. Exquisite.

2 Mahi Mahi filets (fresh or thawed)
a generous 1/2 stick butter
1 large or 2 medium cloves garlic – diced
1 or 2 green onions (scallions, white part, sliced thinish)
1 plum tomato (seeds removed, diced)
1 lemon halved, seeds removed
Louisiana (Tobasco) hot sauce
Fresh Cilantro (remove from stems)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper

Preheat over to 450 degrees
Coat fish with olive oil, salt & pepper to taste
Place fish in baking dish and bake for 20-25 minutes until flaky
Last 5 minutes prepare the sauce:
Melt butter in sauce pan
when hot, add garlic and 1 tbsp lemon juice (about a half lemon)
Let cook over medium low for 1 minute or so
Add green onion let go another 1 minute
Add tomato let go another 1-2 minutes
Set to simmer while you plate the rice, fish, and asparagus
Add 2-10 drops hot sauce and stir, spoon over fish.
Garnish fish with Cilantro
Add lemon wedge to plate (good on fish and/or asparagus)

Trust me, fish doesn’t get better than this.

Posted by Dad  6/15/2015


June 7, 2013

Essential stir-fry recipe

Posted in Chicken, Dips and Sauces, Fish, Rice, Vegetables at 7:35 pm by Sheila OConnell

This is copied from a slate.com recipe I tried out recently:

In theory, a stir-fry is the model weeknight dinner. It’s fast, it combines vegetables and protein in a single dish, it’s relatively healthy, and it requires no accompaniment other than rice. (OK, fine, maybe also some Riesling or a beer, preferably a pale ale.) But many home cooks shoot themselves in the foot by being far too ambitious in their stir-frying. Stir-fries can accommodate many different kinds of meat and produce—but that doesn’t mean you should dump the entire contents of your refrigerator in your skillet or wok. In fact, the best stir-fries are as restrained as James Blake’s eponymous album: They combine two principal ingredients—one protein, one vegetable—with a trio of essential aromatic seasonings and a simple, delicious sauce. The below recipe, featuring chewy tofu (made chewier via freezing, if you have time) and vernal asparagus, is the ideal stir-fry iteration, as far as I’m concerned. But it can serve as a blueprint for virtually any stir-fry, so long as you remember three fundamental rules.

The first is to cook your protein and your vegetable separately, and combine them only after both are fully cooked. Protein—whether chicken, pork, beef, shrimp, or tofu—should be stirred minimally so that it maintains undisturbed contact with the hot pan and acquires a nice, seared exterior. (If you’re tempted to prod mercilessly at your protein, distract yourself by chopping your other ingredients as it sears.) Meanwhile, vegetables must be stirred fairly often so that they cook through quickly without any part getting mushy. Attempts at stir-frying protein and vegetables simultaneously will result in an erratic mélange of overcooked and undercooked ingredients, many of which will end up slimy and tattered.

A second rule of thumb for stir-frying: Choose one vegetable per stir-fry. Not all vegetables cook at the same rate, and getting two vegetables to hit that cusp between tender and crisp at the exact same time is pretty much impossible. (You can, of course, cook multiple vegetables in batches, but once you head down that road, stir-frying no longer qualifies as quick and easy.) Furthermore, crowding your pan with vegetables will result in their releasing more liquid, which threatens to make them soggy instead of crisp. Though you should not combine more than one vegetable in a stir-fry, you may combine your vegetable with a fungus: Mushrooms cook through quickly but never really become overcooked, which makes them a great companion to any vegetable. You must combine your vegetable with three important aromatics—ginger, garlic, and chile—without which your stir-fry will taste flat.

Finally, always remember to add liquid only after everything is more or less finished cooking. A proper sauce for stir-fries combines something salty—soy sauce, usually, though fish sauce also works—with something a little bit sweet. Mirin, sweet Japanese rice wine, contributes a wonderful fermented flavor, but if you don’t have any, substitute a teaspoon of honey or sugar combined with two teaspoons of water. Soy sauce and mirin both burn if cooked for much longer than a minute, so plan to leave them on the heat just long enough to coat the other ingredients and thicken into a glaze.

Stir-Fried Tofu, Asparagus, and Shiitakes
Yield: 2 to 3 servings
Time: 25 to 30 minutes, plus time to freeze and thaw the tofu

One 14-ounce package extra-firm tofu, drained and patted dry
2 tablespoons peanut oil
Salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 medium jalapeño or bird’s eye chile, seeded and minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound asparagus, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1-inch segments
3½ ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon mirin
Cooked short-grain brown or white rice for serving (optional)

1. At least one day before you plan to make the stir-fry, cut the tofu into ½- to ¾-inch slices and cut each slice into 1- to 2-inch triangles or rectangles. Freeze the tofu overnight, then thaw it in the refrigerator.

2. Put 1 tablespoon of the peanut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When it’s hot, add the tofu, season with salt and pepper, and cook, turning every 3 to 5 minutes, until browned on all sides, about 10 minutes total. Transfer the tofu to a plate.

3. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon peanut oil to the pan. When it’s hot, add the ginger, jalapeño, and garlic, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the asparagus and mushrooms, and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are just tender, 3 to 5 minutes.

4. Return the tofu to the pan, and add the soy sauce and mirin. Cook, stirring gently, until the sauce thickens, about 1 minute. Serve hot, over rice if desired. (Store leftover stir-fry in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a few days.)

Posted by Sophie

December 30, 2012

Seafood chowder

Posted in Fish, Soups at 9:03 pm by Sheila OConnell

2 cans chicken broth
1 med onion, chopped
2-3 med potatoes (diced)
1/3 lb scallops
3/4 lb white fish (cod, haddock, etc)
1/3 lb cooked shrimp
1/2 lb crab (I like the imitation)
1 small lobster (optional)
1 small light cream
Butter, flour
I suggest you skip the lobster
If shrimp needs to be cooked, wash and devein then steam for 2-3 minutes
Rinse fish, scallops, etc
Cook onion and potatoes in broth 10-15 minutes
Add fish and scallops cook 5 minutes.
Add rest of seafood, cook on low or shut off
In separate pan melt 2 tlbs butter and add 1 tbls flour.
Mix well, then add 1 cup cream, cook on low heat till thickened. Add slowly to chowder.
Heat to serve.
Posted by Dad / Sophie

August 18, 2012

Oven-baked Salmon with Herbs

Posted in Fish at 9:37 am by Sheila OConnell

Salmon prepared this way is easy, healthy and delicious!

1 salmon filet, about 1 lb.
2 – 4 tbsp fresh herbs, chopped (thyme is great, haven’t tried dill but it should be good)
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp olive oil

Heat oven to 325.
Chop the herb and mix it with salt and pepper.
Smear the olive oil on an oven-proof dish (I use a pyrex pizza dish) and put the fish on top, skin side down.
Smear a little oil from the dish onto the top of the salmon.
Pat herb mixture onto the top of the fish.
Bake for about 20 – 30 minutes, until the fish flakes.

Optional tartar sauce:
Mix some mayonnaise, lemon zest and juice, capers and a small amount of hot sauce.


November 25, 2010

Thai Green Curry

Posted in Fish at 10:11 am by Sheila OConnell

This curry can be made with chicken instead of shrimp–just substitute 2 skinless chicken breast fillets, slice them into finger-sized strips, and stir-fry with the paste for around 8 minutes before adding the other ingredients.

(Serves 2)


A large bunch of asparagus

1/2 a fresh red chile

1 tablespoon peanut or vegetable oil

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1 pound large shrimp, raw, peeled

1 14-oz can of coconut milk

a handful of snow peas

1 lime


For the green curry paste:

2 stalks of lemongrass

4 scallions

3 fresh green chiles

4 cloves of garlic

a thumb-sized piece of fresh root ginger

a large bunch of fresh cilantro

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

optional: 8 fresh or dried kaffir lime leaves

3 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon fish sauce


To make the green curry paste:

Trim the lemongrass stalks, peel back and discard the outer leaves, and crush the stalks by bashing them a few times with the heel of your hand or a rolling pin. Trim the scallions. Halve and seed the green chiles. Peel and roughly chop the garlic and ginger. Set aside a few sprigs of fresh cilantro, and whiz the rest in a food processor with the lemongrass stalks, scallions, chiles, garlic, ginger, coriander seeds, and lime leaves until everything is finely chopped. While whizzing, pour in the soy sauce and fish sauce and blitz again until you have a smooth paste. If you don’t have a food processor, chop everything finely by hand.

To make the curry:

Snap the woody ends off the asparagus and discard them. Finely slice the stalks lengthways with a knife. Finely chop the red chile and set aside. Place a large frying pan or wok over high heat. When it’s really hot, add the peanut and sesame oils, swirl them around, and carefully drop in the shrimp. Add the asparagus and green curry paste and stir-fry for about 30 seconds. Pour in the coconut milk and add the snow peas. Give it all a good stir, bring to a boil, and cook for a few minutes. Have a taste and add a bit more soy sauce, if needed. Push down on the lime and roll it around to get the juices going, then cut it in half. Squeeze the juice into the pan.

To serve:

Pick the leaves off the remaining cilantro sprigs. Serve the curry sprinkled with the cilantro leaves and the chopped red chile and some fluffy rice.


Posted by Sophie

March 29, 2010

Roasted Red Pepper Filled with Tuna

Posted in Fish at 6:57 pm by Sheila OConnell

I’m eating this meal for the first time as I type this recipe, and it is so tasty!


  • 1 med or large red bell pepper
  • 1 garlic clove
  • pinch salt
  • 1 anchovy fillet, soaked in water to cover 10-15 min, then drained, rinsed, and patted dry (Note:  the recipe says this is optional – I left it out, and still tastes good)
  • 1 tsp capers, rinsed
  • 1 5 oz can water-packed tuna
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp plain low-fat yogurt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

Roast pepper until uniformly charred. Remove from heat, place in a bowl, cover, and allow to cool.

Make tuna filling: Combine garlic and salt and mash to a paste. Add anchovy (if using) and mash. Add capers and mash. In a bowl, break up the tuna with a fork and stir in garlic mixture, lemon juice, olive oil, and yogurt. Add more yogurt or oil to taste. Season with pepper and parsley.

When the pepper is cool enough to handle, peel and discard blackened skin, rinse briefly, and pat dry. Cut away the top, then cut or pull apart into thirds. Remove seeds and membranes, holding the pepper over a bowl to catch any juice. Lay pieces on a plate, season with salt and pepper, and fill with tuna mixture.

Posted by Sophie

January 25, 2010

Baked Salmon

Posted in Fish at 1:04 pm by Sheila OConnell

Also known as Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy Salmon


Two cleaned salmon fillets (I usually get about a pound or a little less, which makes two servings)

1 tsp salt

3/4 tsp pepper (maybe a little less)

2 lemons


1. Preheat oven to 375 (well, really 350-375. You just have to feel it out)

2. Line a cookie sheet with two layers of tin foil

3. Grease the foil with butter

4. Line foil with two rows of lemon slices

5. Place salmon fillets on top of lemon slices and squeeze some lemon juice on top

7. Coat the fillets with salt/pepper mixture

8. Wrap everything up with the foil and bake for ~25 min (sometimes less) or until salmon is light pink and flakes easily

Posted by Jeff