Monday, January 13, 2014

Rock Cod in Tomato Basil Sauce with Zucchini and Mexican Rice

We're fortunate to have a talented fisherman in our family - our brother-in-law, Jerrie, often shares his wonderful fresh fish with us.  We wanted a simple preparation for this Rock Cod, so we turned to one of our favorite cooking methods for fresh fish which simply involves wrapping it in individual packets with vegetables and seasoning and baking it at a high temperature for a short time:  en papillote.  You can really use any oils, vegetables, and herbs that you like.  And the best part?  There's no pan to wash!  

You can substitute any kind of fish you like. using this method.  The flavor of this really reminded us of Red Snapper Veracruz which was quite popular in SoCal in the 90s.  Feel free to add some olives or jalapenos to your fish packets.

Great meal for a weeknight!

Rock Cod in Tomato Basil Sauce
In a medium sauce pan, over medium heat, saute:
1 Tablespoon Butter
2 cloves Garlic, minced

As soon as Garlic begins to soften, pour in:
1 14.5 ounce can diced Tomatoes

Allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, until tomatoes start to break down and most of the liquid has evaporated.

Then stir in 3 Tablespoons chopped Basil (or 1 teaspoon, dried)
Add Salt and Pepper, to taste (keeping in mind most canned products already have salt added)

Remove from heat.

While sauce is cooking, begin preparing fish packets.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line a baking sheet with foil, or parchment paper.

To create packets, cut rectangular pieces of foil, or parchment paper, fold in half, and crease.  
Open up and set fish filets on one side.
Sprinkle a little Salt and Pepper on both sides of fish filets.
Spoon Tomato Sauce on top, and fold the paper back over.
Seal all the edges firmly, so fish can steam inside packets.

Bake for 15 minutes.
You can either open the packets and plate the fish, or serve it in the packets.

So easy & so flavorful!

Sauteed Zucchini
Slice 3-4 medium zucchini and place in a bowl.  Sprinkle with salt and let sit about 5 minutes.
In a large skillet over medium heat, saute:
1/4 cup Olive Oil
Prepared Zucchini
1 bunch of green onions, chopped
 Stir often to cook evenly, until tender.  Sprinkle with a scant teaspoon of sugar to cut the bitterness of the squash. 

Top with a sprinkle of Parmesan Cheese.

You may recall that I was invited to review the newly-released Muy Bueno Cookbook.  Unfortunately, I couldn't find a copy of their Mexican Rice recipe to share with you, but it's quite easy to make and delicious.  The first time we made it, we added some peas; this time we added corn.  

Tidepool full of Sea Anemones, near Malibu


  1. You make the best dinners Susan! Who wouldn't love to be a guest at your house?

  2. Looks wonderful Susan!! Nothing like fresh fish prepared simply for a weeknight meal..and I'm also a fan of baking in parchment and forget about this delicious technique! Happy New Year to you and John ;)

  3. Looks wonderfully delicious, Susan!! So fresh looking!

  4. What a delicious meal, I love the idea of serving fish with tomato sauce!

  5. I have landed safely in Cambria and am somewhat settled. It's going to work, Susan. It's going to work. Now I am starting to pour through your posts about fish as well as read Binns' cookbook on the Central Coast so I can have some cooking adventures. Your rock cod dinner plan looks delicious as well as beautiful. (I'm sure Jerri is the recipient of many of your yummy desserts.) I agree with Chris, you make the best dinners.

  6. This looks amazing and I love the flavor combinations! Also, I love the tide pool photo! ~ David


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