Friday, March 13, 2009

Fish again?

As I've mentioned here before, I'm mostly vegetarian. Cooking meat or fish always makes me a little nervous and I think I drive the guys behind the counter crazy on those rare occasions when I peer into the glass cases hesitantly, fumbling around for a coherent request. "Uh....yeah....I need some salmon? For a few people?" Most women of my age are quite competent with such requests and I still dither around like a 20 year old living away from home for the first time.

And for years it didn't matter. I had no need for flesh of any kind. But as my body has changed I have found that it rather likes the quick blast of protein a little meat or fish provides. I have been steadily working to increase my repertoire beyond fish on the grill and beef brisket, not that there's anything in the world wrong with either of these. When I was recently given a stack of old food magazines I came across a recipe for coconut crusted salmon with tamarind sauce that I've now made twice, and it's been a hit both times.

The recipe includes many of the flavors I love: earthy turmeric, tangy tamarind, and sweet coconut. It's got a lovely crunch from the panko and coconut crust, and the accompanying sauce provides lots of lively flavors. I served it along with saffron rice and a multicolored cole slaw (made by my youngest using a recipe from Mollie Katzen's Salad People) for a perfectly balanced meal. The fish is quite simple to make and comes together quickly, providing me with at least one fish recipe I can cook with confidence.

I typed up the recipe and posted it here before realizing that the whole thing is available at the Cooking Light website.

added later: I managed to get the turmeric stains out of a favorite shirt after the usual stain removers failed. The key seems to be to dab the stains with lemon juice and then leave the soiled garment in the sun for a few hours. Good as new! You can avoid this whole process by wearing an apron.

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