tilapia for two

the fish

on low heat:
2 fillets tilapia, salt and peppered
2 T butter in nonstick frying pan
3 cloves garlic, chopped
sauté garlic in butter 2 minutes (don't burn garlic). add fish
cook fish 1 minute each side. add:
2 T chopped parsley
1 lemon, juice of
cook again both sides 1 minute to coat both sides with added stuff.
cover and leave 1 minute. turn off heat. eat.

the fish story

bob never knows what to do with fish.

But this woman was offering cooked fish samples on toothpicks in the supermarket. bob tried one. It was great. She offered more since she was about to shut down the giveaway but bob automatically said no (childhood training). A few minutes later he changed his mind but returning it was too late to get another sample. He forgot even to ask how she cooked it.

Returning the next night bob asks the fish counter person if he knows anything about cooking this fish. He doesn't. But there is a 2 page publicity sheet. bob buys the fish for dinner.

Later that day bob is tied up software consulting with a friend of a friend about typesetting line numbers for a 4 thousand page document on biblical manuscripts. ani takes over the fish problem. bob returns for dinner. ani solved the fish problem brilliantly.

the fish facts

The publicity sheet says this freshwater fish is super healthy (to eat). And of Middle Eastern origin (Nile, Sea of Galilee, River Jordan) though most recently fish farmed in California. It's the fish from the fish and bread multiplication miracle of Jesus and Peter (fisherman later turned saint). A holy fish. (unrelated to "Holy mackerel!") And hard to overcook so it's great for kitchen amateurs like us. Even millenia before the fish trick, it was "preferred by nine out of ten pharaohs" in ancient Egypt. They got the best. Or else.

Ani served it with Near Eastern barley pilaf from a box. Excellent.

Here are some fish pointers. The fish is apparently good in every possible way you can cook a fish except undercooked.
Raw it's firm and rubbery.
Slightly cooked (2-3 min) it's white outside, pink and rubbery inside.
Nearly cooked (3-4 min) it's golden outside (hence the full name "Golden Tilapia"), soft and mushy inside.
Fully cooked (4-5 min) it's flakey, firm, and tender throughout.

Out in California they must have these fish doing aerobics. They're only 1.3 percent fat. And no "fishy" taste. Moist, sweet, and firm. Second only to carp in domesticated production world wide. We get this fish regularly. Almost. Give it a try.

tlapia42.htm: 10-jun-2001 [what, ME cook? © 1984 dr bob enterprises]