and Steamed White rice
I love food, but one thing I love more is eating well and cheap. Two ingredients that are cheap and filling is fish and rice. You can add whatever veggies you like but in my humble opinion, this is all you need. I want to also put forth a disclaimer, not only to say that you are responsible for your own safety but I also want to give you some words of encouragement. I have made this dish a few times and I like to think that I have quite a lot of experience in cooking meals for myself and my wife to know how I want something cooked and when it is ready. That said, do not expect to get it exactly the way you want it the first time. This is how I prep one of my favorite meals.
In the next step let’s talk a little bit about the ingredients. I like to use the term IMHO = in my humble opinion, if you see this, don’t panic. I am simply stating that these methods are what I find works best.
Step 1: Ingredients
Rice has been found and eaten in many forms and ways, some today are even genetically modified to contain more nutrients. Whatever rice you choose, it is an abundant and inexpensive food source when compared to other grains, it’s a complex carbohydrate and is packed with starch. The Japanese were smart enough to discover that you can use rice for many things. If you’re interested in the idea of using food or household kitchen basics to do all kinds of things, look up the book Urawaza. I find it to be quite interesting. I like my rice steamed, fragrant, white and sticky so I typically use Jasmine rice. On occasion I’ll use basmati.
If you don’t like fish, I get it, I use to be the same and so was my wife. I started cooking a lot the first time I went through university, and I quickly discovered that if you’re going to make something for yourself to eat, it has to taste just right otherwise you can start to get discouraged. That means that texture, taste/flavor, but also how it makes you feel the day after. Let’s face it, fish is easy on the system and once you get the hang of it, your friends and loved ones will love you for making it. I choose to fry my fish at home or grill on an open flame in the woods, but you can prepare fish many ways. One more interesting fact about the Japanese: One tradition during a transplant of a tree, plant or a bushel of herbs would be to place a piece of raw fish in the soil under the plant to provide crucial vitamins in order to improve health and help maintain odds of survival.
In this case I have chosen some Tilapia fish.
-Olive oil (any cooking oil should do)
The Rice takes roughly 15 to 20 minutes to cook in the rice maker so it’s probably wisest (IMHO) to start with that. So put in 2 cups of rice and 2 & ½ cups of water with about a tsp. of salt and mix it together. (now you can just start cooking it and leave it alone till it’s done).
Also if you do not have a rice cooker and know how to use one, you are not taking advantage of the great food you could make and the money you could save.
Take the fish out. The best fish, is a freshly caught fish. If you’re working with frozen fish just take it out, don’t bother thawing it since it'll thaw very quickly once you start cooking it.
Set your stove to medium. Place a little oil (about 1 or 2 tbsps.) in your pan (ideally non-stick) with about ¼ tsp salt and then throw the fish in.
Don't step away to watch tv yet, fish cooks and burns pretty fast if your not paying attention.
Fish is so naturally full of water that you really need to let it all evaporate (unless it’s cut fresh) before you can start to fry it but not to worry, this will cook your fish more efficiently and uniformly. So leave this lid off while your cooking after the thaw, to allow for evaporation.
The fish is cooked once the fish turns from an almost translucent texture to an opaque or white meaty look. At this point you can go ahead and eat it if you want or really need to but most people (myself included) prefer a little more of a cooked taste which is more flavourful.
When the bottom of the pan is browned, it’s a good indication that not only is all the water gone but underneath the fish should be browned to the same color that you see beside it.
It’s around this time that you have to flip the fish to fry the other side. So slowly work your spatula flat around and under the edges of the fish and flip that flounder strait over. At this point the frying should be curling the edges of the fish upwards giving kind of a skirt to pull up.
Now that your fish is flipped you could keep cooking for 2 to 3 minutes and then serve it up to eat or you can turn off the stove and just let the residual heat left from the pan and element cook the rest of the fish while you prepare the rest of the meal.
The rice should be ready right about now, so it would be a good idea to place some on a dish till you’re happy with your fish.
Now serve up your fish and enjoy!
Step 12: Closing Words
Despite what people say (IMHO), frying your food in a little oil isn’t bad
for you, it’s when you cook with it too much or use too much oil it could cause health problems. It’s important to remember though that sometimes the best things are very basic with few ingredients.