Fresh fish dish with Mediterranean flair

December 09, 1992|By Rita Calvert | Rita Calvert,Contributing Writer

Embracing the flavors of the Mediterranean, this recipe spans many countries with vibrant colorful vegetables crowning a fresh filet of fish. Thyme, a fragrant and abundant herb, proliferates in that region and enhances this robust dish. Credit must be given to Steve Raichlen's new book, "High Flavor, Low Fat", for inspiring us to adopt recipes such as this one that yield the most satisfying tastes while paring fat.

Couscous is a minute, pebbly grain used frequently in the Mediterranean, and perfectly complements the fish and vegetables. It is found in most supermarkets, and plumps with the addition of nothing more than boiling water. Follow the package directions for proportions and then stir in 2 tablespoons of capers.

A fresh fruit tart or small individual ones add a refreshing finish.

Items you should have in your pantry: olive oil, thyme, lemon juice, salt and pepper, capers.

And your 10-item shopping list:

4 (6 oz.) orange roughy fish filets, 1/2 -inch thick

1 small crookneck squash

1 small zucchini squash

1 medium red bell pepper

1 small eggplant

couscous

fruit tarts for dessert

Orange roughy St. Tropez Serves 4

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 (6 oz.) orange roughy (or grouper or halibut) filets, 1/2 -inch thick, blotted dry

1 small crookneck squash, cut into 1/2 -inch cubes

1 small zucchini squash, cut into 1/2 -inch cubes

1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1/2 -inch cubes

1 small eggplant, cut into 1/2 -inch cubes

2 teaspoons fresh thyme or 3/4 teaspoon dried

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

In a large skillet heat 1 tablespoon olive oil on medium high heat until hot. Add fish and sear to brown and cook for 4-5 minutes per side. Remove and keep warm while sauteing vegetables. Add the other tablespoon of olive oil to pan and heat. Add vegetables and saute, stirring a few times for 8-10 minutes or until vegetables are cooked but al dente. Stir in thyme and return fish to pan, being careful not to break. Continue to cook until fish is hot. Serve on a platter or individual plates with vegetables surrounding fish.

Drizzle fish and vegetables with lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.

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