Thai sauce adds flavor to fish fillets, vegetables

Eat for Life

February 21, 2007|By Jill Wendholt Silva | Jill Wendholt Silva,McClatchy-Tribune

Like the armchair traveler who is content to read about daring adventures, prepared Asian stir-fry sauces hold out the promise of new and exotic tastes - without the dangers of deciphering ingredient labels in a foreign language.

But sadly, when it comes to flavor, something is usually lost in the translation.

Unlike classical French sauces and reductions, Asian sauces are relatively simple to pull together. Whisk together a few uncomplicated ingredients and skip the MSG (monosodium glutamate, an allergy trigger for some people) and the preservatives. Making your own also allows you to control the amount of sodium and sugar.

The fish and vegetables are prepared using two low-fat cooking techniques: The fish is broiled while the vegetables are stir-fried. Both techniques keep added fats to a minimum. This sauce also would go well with chicken and seafood.

Fish and Vegetables in Thai Sauce

Makes 4 servings

2 firm-textured fish fillets, 8 to 9 ounces each

1/2 cup rice vinegar

1/4 cup honey

4 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes

2 teaspoons vegetable oil

1 red pepper, cut into strips about 1/4 inch wide

1 small zucchini, cut into strips about 2 inches by 1/4 inch

1 cup sliced mushrooms

2 tablespoons minced cilantro (optional)

Place fish in zip-top bag. Combine vinegar, honey, garlic and red-pepper flakes; spoon 3 tablespoons vinegar mixture over fish. Seal bag, turn to coat well and allow to marinate 15 minutes. Reserve remaining vinegar mixture.

Spray broiler pan with nonstick spray coating. Drain fish and place on broiler pan. Broil 5 minutes, turn and broil about 3 minutes or just until fish is done and flakes easily.

Meanwhile, heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add vegetables and stir-fry 2 minutes. Pour reserved vinegar mixture over vegetables and heat to boil. Boil 30 seconds, stirring constantly.

Arrange vegetables and sauce on serving plate. Top with fish, then spoon some sauce over top of fish. Sprinkle with cilantro, if desired.

Per serving: 208 calories, 3 grams fat, trace saturated fat, 49 milligrams cholesterol, 25 grams carbohydrate, 22 grams protein, 68 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber

Recipe and analysis provided by The Kansas City Star.

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