Friday, February 20, 2009

Flounder Tostado

When I was a kid, we spent our summers on Phillip Island, which is a couple hours SE of Melbourne, Australia.

My mother would buy fish direct from the fisherman's co-op, a dinky little shed at the end of the jetty by the bridge that joined the island to mainland.

The fish caught and sold there were small, bay fish and generally they were full of tiny bones. Eeeek!

To this day, I have an aversion to bony fish; I had too many bone-stuck-in-throat experiences as a child.

I don't have an aversion to Whole Foods frozen flounder fillets. I can buy a pack of 2 fillets for under $5, they thaw quickly, there are no bones, and because the flavor of flounder is delicate you can dress it up or down.

The picture above is a Flounder Tostado using ingredients from the Feb 5th grocery list. I love this meal it looks so good the way everything just sits atop the corn tortilla and of course it really jazzes up the delicate flounder.

Oh, and tilapia is a great fish to use for this too, because like flounder it's a delicate flavor, lending itself well to jazzing up.

Flounder or Tilapia Tostado
1) Break open a pack of small tortillas. I use the frozen, yellow-corn tortillas; they have more texture and hold their shape. Allow 2 per person. Wrap them in tin foil and pop on a baking tray. Slip into a 325-degree oven and warm them. (You can of course warm them in a microwave or on top of the grill etc.)
2) Toss some veggies in an oiled lined pan -- whatever veggies are leftover from the list, i.e. some spring onion, zucchini, celery, garlic, and eggplant. Toss rapidly so the veggies don't burn, but on the other hand, you do want them to brown. Lastly, toss in chopped tomato, then turn the heat down, stewing the veggies till they're soft, and till the liquid has evaporated -- you want the veggies to be more solid than sloppy.
3) Meanwhile, melt some butter in another pan and pop in the thawed flounder or tilapia fillet. Fry on med-to-high heat for just a few mins. Squeeze half a lemon over the fish, then take pan off the heat; you don't want to over cook fish -- really, flounder and tilapia fillets are so thin they take maybe 5 mins, max, to cook --season with salt and pepper.

To Serve:
Onto a plate place the warmed tortillas, spoon some stewed veggies over the tortilla, then top with pieces of buttery fish. If you have parsley on hand, or dill, add a few sprigs. You might like to drizzle olive oil and extra lemon juice over the lot to moisten.

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