Over the Memorial Day weekend, I had my children over for a barbecue. I served maple-barbecued chicken, grilled marinated London broil, grilled yellow and green zucchini and asparagus, and tri-color pasta salad. Links to these recipes can be found on my recipe page.
I wanted an easy, but tasty way to prepare the striped bass. Thumbing through Lidia’s Italian-American Kitchen cookbook provide such a recipe. Although her recipe called for cod, why not try it with the bass? The recipe starts by creating your own infused garlic olive oil. If you don’t keep fresh garlic on hand, Carter and Cavero Old World Olive Oil store, sells olive oil infused with garlic. They have several stores in New Jersey and also do mail order. You’ll also need fresh parsley and thyme, six 1-inch cod fillets and fresh lemon juice. All told, the recipe takes approximately 45 minutes to prepare.
You drizzle the garlic olive oil over the fish and then spread a seasoned breadcrumb mixture with fresh thyme, parsley and olive oil on top of the fish. My husband and I loved this preparation. The fish remained moist through baking, there was just a hint of garlic and the seasoned breadcrumbs gave the fish a fresh taste. This was an easy and delicious way to prepare both cod and sea bass and other firm white fish.
Lobster Mac’n Cheese is a decadent meal. However, Ina’s recipe uses a combination of both extra sharp cheddar and Gruyere cheese. Compared to the Betty Crocker mac’ n cheese recipe that I make, we both thought that despite its richness, this mac’ n cheese wasn’t heavy tasting at all. Perhaps it was the white sauce you make for the dish. It uses one quart of whole milk along with 12 ounces of Gruyere cheese and 8 ounces of extra sharp Cheddar that seemed to lighten this dish.
I purchased three, 1 to 1-1/2 pound, pre-cooked lobster tails at ShopRite so that all I had to do was extract the meat from the shells. This wasn’t too difficult. I used a meat mallet and nut crackers (it’s what I had on hand), to get to the lobster meat. I did this a day or two earlier. The day I made the recipe, all I had to do was to mix in the lobster meat. I also purchased a loaf of buttered top white bread that was made by Breadsmith in Cranford, NJ. I needed the bread to make fresh breadcrumbs that topped the mac’n cheese. I pulsed 4 slices of bread in my food processor then sautéed them in a pan with butter. Once baked, you had a buttery crunch against the rich, creaminess of the mac’n cheese. Decadent, yes. Fairly easy to make, yes. Will I make this again, you bet.
With the summer season getting under way, I’m sure you’ll enjoy making and eating these dishes as much as I did.
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.