In New Orleans, I sampled a dish called Trout Meunière Amandine. Now, my take on this Creole classic is done the healthy way. Well, more like health-ier, actually. You know how French cooking can be… so I decided to make a few tweaks to keep the bad stuff to a minimum without losing the flavor. It was simple, in fact. I ditched the eggs and traded the cream for vegetable stock, the all-purpose flour for the whole wheat version and real butter for a butter substitute with no hydrogenated oils (yes I read the labels and do the math). That, and I simply relied on the freshness of all my other ingredients. I wanted to omit the butter part altogether but felt that it needed the nutty sweetness that only a butter product can provide. Oh, and I also baked the fish instead of pan frying it.
By the way, the main ingredients in this dish are the fish, of course, and then parsley, almond slices and lemon. These are what makes the dish what it is. The rest can either be omitted or substituted for something else.
Ahhh!! I can already smell the gulf by the Riverwalk.
2 Cod filets (Trout, Catfish or Halibut, if you wish)
French Green Beans
Whole Wheat Flour
2 Large Garlic Cloves
Almond Oil (EVOO will work too)
Butter Substitute with no Hydrogenated Oils
Whole Wheat Flour
Vegetable Stock (or fish stock if you have it)
Creole Seasoning: Mix 2 parts paprika with 1 part cayenne, dried oregano, dried thyme, garlic powder, salt & fresh ground pepper
Preheat oven to 375F and boil water in a pot. Meanwhile, chop and/or mince garlic, shallot and as much parsley as you want. In a wide and shallow bowl, pour about half a cup of flour. Brush filets with oil, sprinkle with Creole seasoning and dip in flour to thinly coat all sides. Place in a baking pan and stick in the oven for about 12 minutes or so, being careful not to overcook. While that’s going on, blanch the green beans in boiling water for about 60 seconds then quickly drain and rinse in cold tap water to stop the cooking. Sprinkle with Creole seasoning and set aside.
Now, let’s make the Meunière Sauce. Coat a medium heated pan with a tablespoon of both oil and butter substitute in the pan and saute the garlic and shallots for a couple of minutes. Then add a dash of Creole seasoning and about a tablespoon of flour to make a roux. Once the roux is made (after about 5 minutes of stirring), gradually pour some stock in the pan while stirring, just until a thin gravy consistency is formed. Add the juice of one lemon and the chopped parsley and mix thoroughly. Finally, toast your sliced almonds in a medium low heated smaller pan for a few minutes or until they’re looking nice and toasty, indeed.
We’re done cooking at this point. Time to plate! Lay a filet and some green beans on a serving platter and top with the sauce. Sprinkle with more lemon juice and some almond slices. If you have a can of French Fried Onions sitting around, you can add some of that too, if you wish.
Now, pop open a nice Fume Blanc and you’re all set. Bon apetite!