Does your enthusiasm ever wax and wane for the things you love? Mine does--although I can be the most ardent of lovers, sometimes I just get over-saturated and need a break.
So it has been with cooking--I've apparently taken a little mental holiday where I've relinquished cooking control and responsibility to my ever-patient and charming (and handsome) husband who has seen to it that we've been well-fed.
You know how I know this spark has been rekindled? I opened Gourmet Today to a random page--and the recipe was something crazy, like Butter-Toasted Oatmeal with Brown Sugar Glaze (I made that up--blogging in a faraway and cozy upstairs bedroom). And what I felt was a combo of mmm, that sounds good/that's weird and interesting/I'm going to make that. Its not a mind thing, it's a heart/stomach thing.
So aside from cooking ambition, what has been my most recent practical cooking need? Fast, weeknight foods, and that's where Gourmet Today comes in. 30 minutes to make? Yeah, baby.
Don brought home some catfish from H-Mart (along with a lot of unmarked pastries that have no calorie count so they must have no calories, right? Right?) and Catfish with Green Olives presented itself as the obvious dinner choice.
This is a one-pan dish, and I altered it to suit my needs (as you should with quick, weeknight meals). The recipe asks you to heat oil in a pan, lay the catfish in skinned-side down, and top with your mix of chopped green olives, lemon zest and chopped parsley. Lay a round of buttered parchment paper on top to keep the moisture in while it cooks for about 8 mins.
I heated up a little chicken broth instead, and although I had olives and parsley, no lemon--so I sprinked the fish with rice vinegar instead. I skipped the buttered paper and just covered the skillet with a lid--it's the same idea.
The bonus of using broth instead of oil was that after I took the fish out and covered it, I revived leftover rice on one side of the pan and wilted some broccoli slaw on the other. Voila--quick dinner for three.
Catfish can be hard to find in New England, but if you are near an Asian market of any sort you may have better luck there. And if you live in the area but haven't been to H-Mart in Burlington yet--check it out. It's a wonder.
(photo above by Romulo Yanes, snagged from Epicurious)