Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Jalapeño-Baked Fish with Roasted Tomatoes and Potatoes

There are certain recipes that just aren’t that pretty. They might be incredibly delicious, but they won’t win any beauty pageants – or food styling contests. If you were telling your friends about these recipes, you might say they “have a great personality”. And while “a great personality” might be code for something less than desirable in a blind date, it’s not at all a bad thing on your dinner plate.

Take today’s recipe: Jalapeno-Baked Fish with Roasted Tomatoes and Potatoes. It’s not really a looker. One glance will not have you drooling on your keyboard. One taste might. This is one of those deceptively delicious dishes. It looks like tomato sauce on top of fish on top of sliced potatoes. It tastes like a mouthwatering, tomato-based sauce flavored with garlic, cilantro, and pickled jalapenos layered on top of moist, perfectly cooked fish on top of thin slices of tender potatoes. Sounds more drool-worthy that it looks, right?

Would you drool even more if I told you this is an easy, quick-cooking dinner? If so, grab a napkin my friends, because this recipe is indeed weeknight friendly. And relatively inexpensive. And just oh so good. Oh, and everything cooks in one dish, so there are barely any dishes to wash. Just thought I’d throw that one in there, you know, in case you weren’t already sold.

One Year Ago: We were moving and didn’t have a kitchen or the internet!

Jalapeño-Baked Fish with Roasted Tomatoes and Potatoes
Adapted from Mexican Everyday via The Way the Cookie Crumbles

1 lb. red skin or Yukon Gold potatoes, thinly sliced
1 T. vegetable or olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt
15 oz. can diced tomatoes, preferably fire-roasted
1 large clove garlic, peeled and cut into a few pieces
1/3 cup cilantro, loosely packed, chopped
1/4 cup sliced, pickled jalapenos
1 T. jalapeno pickling juice (from the jar or can the jalapenos were packed in)
1 lb. skinless fish filets, about 3/4 to 1-inch thick *

* Mahi mahi, tilapia, or other types of mild white fish will work well.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place the potato slices in an 8x8-inch baking dish. Drizzle the oil over the potatoes and sprinkle them with the salt. Toss the potatoes to coat them evenly and spread them in an even layer. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and poke a few holes in it. Microwave on high heat (100% power) until the potatoes are nearly tender, about 4 to 5 minutes.

While the potatoes cook, place the tomatoes with their juices, garlic, cilantro, jalapeno slices, and jalapeno juice into a blender or food processor. Puree until nearly smooth, leaving just a little bit of texture.

Lay the fish filets over the cooked potatoes.

Pour the tomato mixture over the fish and potatoes.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the fish flakes when pressed firmly.

Serve immediately.

Serves 4.

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