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Thursday, July 24, 2014

There's something fishy going on

Friday, August 19, 2011

Once again, my blunders in the kitchen should provide a bit of joy to your life.

My wife and I bought some frozen fish, cod to be specific, from the store with the intent of cooking it up and enjoying a healthy dinner or two. That was about two months ago, and the fish just sat in the freezer the whole time ... until last week when I decided to bake it.

I did not have any special recipe or anything, just the knowledge bestowed upon me by the Food Network, which is a little rusty I have learned. I didn't go in completely blind. I followed the directions on the packaging for oven temperature and cook time, I even followed the directions for thawing out the fillets.

The first mistake came with my impatience. I apparently did not wait long enough to allow the fillets to completely thaw. As far as the seasoning, I added some salt and pepper -- a little too much pepper. Since this was my second crack at cooking fish, I decided to not get too creative with my spices. Referencing my Food Network database, courtesy of Emeril Lagassi and Rachael Ray, I remembered to put a little lemon juice on the fillets. There was mistake No. 2, perhaps the juice from an entire lemon was a little too much. It smelled great though.

Without knowing the issues my previous decisions would cause, I popped those fillets in the oven and eagerly awaited as my dinner baked. I was looking forward to having a great and healthy meal.

When the oven beeped, I pulled the fillets out of the oven and was tickled pink when the fish did not stick to the pan. I thought I was good to go once I got that far. I checked to see that the fish flaked with the fork before I shut the oven off. To me, it appeared as though it was flaking.

I made a side of some spinach and cheese-filled ravioli to go with the fish, just in case something went wrong, and let me say I was glad I had it. I put the fillet on the plate with some pasta, sat down and dove in with great anticipation of displaying my culinary greatness. What I found was a fillet that was overdone on the edges and still cold in the center. As you would imagine, my balloon was quickly popped. Other than that, there was just a touch too much pepper and perhaps I will only use the juice of half a lemon.

Needless to say, I ate pasta for dinner. The only one who benefits from my kitchen catastrophes, the dog thoroughly enjoyed the healthy dinner.

As with most of my attempts to be the at-home chef of the year, I will not give up. I am seeking advice for some good tips and good recipes for cooking fish. I'm open to baking, broiling and grilling ... frying it kind of defeats the purpose of a healthy meal. If anyone out there has some help to offer me, please email me at mpommier@fstribune.com or call me at (620) 223-1462.

Michael Pommier
The Shrinking Man