My husband and I have been eating more fish lately. I know it’s good for the body, but the one or two recipes I’ve been using aren’t that good for the soul. They’re way too dry.
So I’m delighted that Dale has concocted a tilapia recipe that’s scrumptious. Maybe it’s because it’s French or maybe it’s just because Dale knows how to make things taste good.
Here we go!
Tilapia with White Wine and Mushrooms
I find frozen tilapia to be a good choice when I want to serve fish because the fillets are individually packaged. I can defrost only what I intend to use. Also its mild flavor melds easily with many different seasonings and accompaniments. Here we have an updated version of a traditional French formula that has all the rich flavor you would expect from a French kitchen but with a streamlined approach suited for modern Americans.
You will need:
4 Tilapia Fillets ½ cup of White Wine
6 White Mushrooms ½ cup of Fish Stock or bottled Clam Juice
1 medium shallot ½ cup of Heavy Cream
1 tsp. Dried Tarragon 2 Tbs. of Butter
Salt 2 Tbs. of Minced Parsley
White Pepper 1 Tbs. freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
1. Defrost the fillets.
2. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
3. Thinly slice the mushrooms.
4. Mince the shallot. If you don’t have a shallot, use 3 Tablespoons of minced yellow onion.
5. Mince the parsley. This is for your garnish.
6. Squeeze the lemon.
- Scatter half of the mushrooms, minced shallot and tarragon over the bottom of a shallow baking dish.
- Lay the fillets on top of the mushrooms, shallots and tarragon.
- Lightly salt and pepper the fillets.
- Sprinkle the remaining mushrooms, shallots and tarragon on top of the fillets.
- Pour the white wine, fish stock (or bottled clam juice) over the fillets. In the absence of fish stock or clam juice, use chicken stock.
- Put a lid or aluminum foil over the baking dish.
- Poach the fish for about 20 to 30 minutes in the oven.
- After the fish is done, pour the poaching liquid into a skillet or sauté pan.
- Turn the oven off, put the cover back over the fish and put it all into the oven to stay warm.
- Add the cream to the poaching liquid. On the top of your range, turn the heat to its highest level and reduce the liquids by one half.
- Add the butter and lemon juice.
- Taste the sauce and make any needed adjustments like more butter, cream, salt, pepper or lemon juice.
- Put the fillets, with the mushrooms and shallots on dinner plates.
Pour the sauce on top and sprinkle with the minced parsley.
Food for Thought
Meek and Mild, but Flavorful
As I read about how the mildness (the gentle, humble taste) of tilapia opens it up to many culinary possibilities, I am reminded of how important humility is in our Christian lives.
Paul’s exhortation to“live a life worthy of the calling you have received” is followed by the how: “Be completely humble and gentle” (Ephesians 4:1b-2a). The Psalmist answers the question,“Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord” with “he that . . . has not lifted up his soul unto vanity”( Psalm 24:3-4). Humility draws us closer to God and opens the door to many blessings.”
Ashley, a sweet young actor and singer who led one of the bus tours on our Deep South Cruise, told me that working with the Founder of the tours had changed her life. “In college,” she said, “we had great talents in the drama department, and they were arrogant. They behaved as if they were above everyone else, because they had a gift. My new employer is a great talent too, but she’s humble. She simply wants to serve, and now I do too.”
Since I was trained as a classical pianist, much of my life has been lived in the milieu of performance: piano recitals, piano concerts, accompanying for choirs and church services, weddings, receptions. And there is always the temptation to pride. But God has been faithful to bring me repeatedly to the brink of humiliation.( This word is used in James 1:10 in the biblical sense of “bringing low.” )
I break my wrist and can’t play the piano and can’t say, “ I play for a choir” any more. We move to another city and I lose my status as a piano teacher. An agent rejects my idea for a book, and on and on.
At first, I’m upset and frustrated. Then God reminds me of how much he values humility—how Moses was consider the meekest man on earth, how Christ humbled himself and became a servant.(See Philippians 2:5-8) Then the relief floods over me. I’m free from all that pressure. I don’t have to prove anything any more.
A speaker in a powerful Christian conference I attended early in my married life taught us that humility makes a person a better friend. Approaching life humbly enables us to be more interested in what someone else is saying than we are in what we want to say. It keeps us from comparing ourselves with others. It makes us want to serve. It sets us free from the compulsions of the world.
We all have gifts. We may be good with numbers, or adept at repairing things, working with children or sewing. We may have the spiritual gift of teaching, helping, mercy, or even prophecy. But what do you have that you did not receive? God is the source of all good gifts. They come to us only through His grace.
But that’s not all, that’s not all. Scripture promises much more. “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time.”
I am amazed.