Thursday, October 15, 2009

Economical Meals with Mahi Mahi

As you're aware, I'm a budget grocery shopper.

In these economic times, I'm always on the look out for ways to reduce my grocery bill while not compromising my preference for healthy, whole unprocessed foods.

This means I always shop the edge of the grocery store for the best deals on fresh produce, fish, dairy, meat and bulk dry goods.

I venture into the middle aisles for bottled, packaged, tinned and frozen items irregularly and then I do because usually I'm enticed as a result of a coupon for a pantry or condiment item.

I've been clipping coupons more frequently lately because Whole Foods Whole Deal newsletter has some truly great deals, as does their What's on Sale flier which is available online as a pdf.

Yesterday I mentioned that Continental Veal Brats are on sale this week, which I discovered perusing the What's on Sale flier. WFs Whole Catch Mahi Mahi is also on sale for $3 off a frozen packet of two, 6 oz fillets --which means the fillets are about $3.50 each.

Since 3 ounces of animal or fish protein at a main meal is sufficient (truly, google how much protein we need and you'll find that consuming more is not beneficial to one's health at all, rather it can be detrimental), then one pack of two, 6 oz mahi mahi fillets will feed a family of four -- so long as you supplement it with plenty of vegetables and perhaps a grain or starch.

The pics I've posted today are just a few of the delicious meals I've made with mahi mahi.

In the pic above, you'll note I lined my skillet with spinach and squash, laid a fillet of fish over the veggies and topped it with slices of lemon and then a lemon and green-olive tapenade which I purchased in bulk (I take in my own containers) from WFs olive bar.

I poured about half a cup of white wine over the lot and turned the heat to low, placed the lid on the skillet and let the meal steam cook for about 15 mins.

Similarly, I made a skillet meal with organic broccoli, red and green bell peppers, spring onion and corn kernels (I froze uncooked kernels from about 10 cobs late this summer when corn was incredibly inexpensive).

Pouring a little water over the lot, I dotted the fish with a couple teaspoons of butter, a teaspoon of dill seed, and the juice from one lemon, and with the lid on the skillet, I slow-cooked the meal, again for about 15 mins.

The meal to the left is one mahi mahi fillet cut in half, so it's about a 3 ounce portion. I marinated the fish in Braggs, lime juice and a little honey (some crushed garlic and grated ginger root, which are optional) and then I barbecued the fillet, and a baby bok choy.

Making the most of the leftover marinade, I added it to a pot with 3 cups of water and 3/4 of a cup of polenta, cooking the mixture over low heat for about 30 mins.

As you can see the fish is sitting atop the set polenta with a side of green salsa that I made with cilantro, cucumber and spring onion.

Mahi Mahi can be dry and lacking in flavor if overcooked and served plain. So consider slow cooking it with liquid (water, stock, wine) and fresh vegetables, as in the two skillet dishes above. Or marinate it and then grill the fish for maybe 10 mins, since this will ensure that it's flavorful and moist.

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