Friday, September 19, 2008

Tilapia Fish Sticks, Millet Pilaf, and Kale Chips

I have been reading lots of books about how to make your kids healthy lunches, how to feed your family better dinners, and books on eating locally and learning more about where our food comes from. All 3 of these recipes came from The Dinner Diaries: Raising Whole Wheat Kids in a White Bread World by Besty Block, check out here website HERE. She wrote about her experiences of trying to feed her family more healthily. Luckily, for me, my kids and husband love fish, so this was just a fun way to serve it. I finally used the last of that huge box of tilapia from the freezer, so the next fish recipe will be a different kind of fish. The kids loved these fish sticks and I felt good about serving them.
The millet was delicious as well. I had to drive 40 minutes to find it at a health food store, but it as cheap. I thought I had died and gone to heaven in that store. I was surrounded by quinoa, red lentils, couscous, blue cornmeal, etc. Keep an eye out for a fabulous red lentil soup coming up soon. I threw some fresh green beans into the pilaf just because I had them and they needed to be used.
Now, the Kale. This might just be the most delicious veggie ever. Spraying the kale with cooking spray and sprinkling it with salt and pepper and then letting it get crispy in the oven. I let it get really crispy and lucky I had bought 2 bunches of kale, because this was gone in a flash! I don't really like potato chips, but that is how crunchy it was and kinda salty, yum! I am going to make it once a week, just because that is how much I like it!

Crunchy Oven Baked Fish Sticks from The Dinner Dairies by Betsy Block, adapted from a KidSafe Seafood website recipe by Sara Moulton
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp paprika
2 cups panko bread crumbs
1 cup low-fat milk
dipping sauce (recipe follows)

Preheat oven to 425 F.
Spray a cooking sheet with cooking spray.

Combine flour, salt, garlic powder, and paprika in a shallow bowl and mix well. Put milk in a second shallow bowl, and panko crumbs in a third.

Cut the fillets into strips or fingers, then rinse them under cold water. Dry with a paper towel and dip each piece in the flour mixture to coat on all sides, shaking off the excess. Next, dip the pieces in the milk, and then in the breadcrumbs, coating well.
Arrange fish on cooking sheet in a single layer. Bake on the middle shelf of oven for 20 to 25 minutes, turning them halfway through. Season with salt and serve with dipping sauce.

Dipping Sauce
Makes about ½ cup
¼ cup fat free mayonnaise
¼ cup ketchup
2 Tbs finely chopped dill pickle
1 tsp pickle juice
½ tsp fresh lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir until smooth. Add salt to taste

Millet Pilaf taken from The Dinner Diaries, adapted from Vegetarian Planet by Didi Emmons

1 Tbls olive oil

1 cup minced onions

1 cup hulled millet

1 tsp ground coriander

1/4 tsp ground cardamom

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

3 cups chicken stock, plus more as needed

kernels from 2 ears of corn or 1 1/3 cup frozen

1 cup fresh green beans

1 tsp grated orange rind

1 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes, fresh or canned

2 Tbls chopped chives or scallions

In a heavy saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and saute for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the millet, coriander, and cardamom, and saute for another minute or two, stirring constantly. Add the salt, pepper, and stock. Bring to a boil over high heat; then cover and simmer for 30 minutes.

Add the corn, green beans, and orange rind. Stir well, cover and continue cooking for 5 more minutes.

Stir the tomatoes into the millet. Taste for seasoning and then spoon onto plates. Garnish with chives or scallions.

Kale Chips from The Dinner Diaries, adapted from Mollie Katzen's Vegetable Heaven

1 head curly kale

canola oil cooking spray

salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Wash and dry the kale and then chop or tear it into medium-size pieces. Spread it out onto a nonstick baking sheet. Spray the kale lightly with oil, and then sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 15-17 minutes, until light and crunchy (check every few minutes and give the pan a little shake to avoid burning.


Alexa said...

Another great meal... I love tilapia. My kids like it because it doesn't taste fishy and has such a great texture. Your pilaf looks wonderful. I'll have to try it next time I make millet.
We get a lot of kale from the CSA in the winter and spring, so I'll be trying the chips as well. Have a great weekend!

Lisa said...

Great recipes. I will definitely be checking out the cookbook.

Aggie said...

What a great healthy dinner! I love tilapia.

Thanks so much for participating in the roundup. What great recipes! We have the same philosophy about the SEC...always cheer for SEC except when the Gators are playing! Have a great weekend Mary Ann!

Maria said...

I love tialpia. I like how you made the fish sticks pretty healthy. The recipe looks great!

The Blonde Duck said...

That tilapia looks wonderful. I've been trying to find a good fish recipe and this looks fabulous!

innwan said...

I feel like.

Prudy said...

I'd love those fish sticks, especially with such a mild fish. I want that red lentil soup! You'd better get it posted soon, before I come a knockin' on your door.

Modern Farming said...

Very nice and informative blog posting. Among all the fish, tilapia fish is Awesome! Tilapia fish farming is very profitable and easy. I like this fish very much for it's unique taste and nutritional value.