Thursday, April 22, 2010

From the Kitchen: Parmesan Smothered Tilapia

What a way to go, eh? Smothered in parmesan? Well, this recipe really is to die for. Or at least eat as a last meal. So. Darn. Good.

One day in Lent, a Friday to be exact, I was digging through my freezer for a meatless meal. Honestly, my hopes weren't high... after all, how long had those flash frozen tilapia fillets been in there? Too long to remember. But they had been good (if predictably bland) last time, so I pulled them out to thaw and jumped over to to search for a suitable recipe.

In short order, I decided on this one, and just used what I had around and added panko, my new favorite crunch factor. The prep and cooking were so fast we weren't actually ready to eat when they were done. Amazing. They smelled delicious and we dug into them much too quickly to even take a picture for the blog. So I made them again the next week, planning to photograph... but somehow they disappeared before I had the chance. So, having recently gotten more tilapia, I made them one day last week for dinner, again with nothing to show for it, and then again (tried the reduced fat version) for lunch several days ago and finally got a few pictures. And not a good ones either, but I wasn't going to wait for my delicious lunch to cool just so you can look at pretty pictures. I'm not that nice :) Nope, no fresh green brocolli on the side. Just lip-smacking creamy parmesan heaven topped with a light crunch and highly addictive properties. Seriously. You HAVE to try it. Unless you hate parmesan in which case I'll pity you for a second and then and eat your portion too.

Enough description... let's begin our oddyssey of culinary delights.

Parmesan Smothered Tilapia


6-8 4 oz tilapia fillets
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup butter, softened (you can leave this out or reduce it if you're cutting calories)
3 tablespoons mayonnaise (can use light mayo)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon celery seed
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon paprika
Panko-style bread crumbs


Turn on oven broiler to high. Mix all ingredients except tilapia and panko. Place tilapia (what would have been skin side up) in greased pan. Spray fish with cooking spray or rub with a little oil to aid browning. Cook for 3 minutes (or less) under high broiler. Remove from oven, flip fillets carefully, and cook another 3 minutes. Remove from oven and turn broiler to low. Spoon parmesan mixture over each fillet, covering thoroughly. Sprinkle each fillet with panko, and return to oven until bread crumbs are lightly browned, 1-2 minutes. Eat!


Alexis said...

Oh THANKYOU! I have a situation where I've got lots of Tilapia in my fridge and now realize I dont' really LIKE tilapia so since parmesan and butter heals all ills I can now use those guys up!

Karen said...

This recipe may change your mind about tilapia! The flavor and crunch make this bland fish the perfect base (meatier fish would not work), and you may find yourself wanting more! I never really liked it either, but I can tell this recipe will stick in my recipe box :) Hope you are all doing well! We miss you!