Getting Omega 3s
Another weekend is coming to an end. I hate how the time always flies by so quickly! After Alicia caught the bus back to NYC I spent the day running errands, doing laundry, and cooking. Z and I also headed to the gym together, where we worked our butts off (hopefully literally! 🙂 ) side by side, and came home craving a light, refreshing meal.
I have recently read Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food. I truly loved the book. Everything he says about nutritionism and the American diet is eye opening, and ever since I have been paying much more attention to what I am putting into my body. Of course, no one can be perfect, but awareness is important. I think everyone should read the book and then take a look at their own diet and what they believe about nutrition. Now I know what Oprah was going on about!
Pollan has a part in his book about omega 3 fatty acids, how important they are in our diet, and how we as a population are not consuming enough. Without going into a long description about their health benefits (including cancer fighting qualities and heart health), it is good to know that omega 3s are found in fish, flax seeds, and free range eggs (to name the top sources). Looking at my own diet, I realized that my omega 3 consumption is incredibly low. We hardly ever eat fish, the best source for these fatty acids, and once I saw how good they are for you I knew that fish would make an appearance on our table ASAP.
I was looking for a quick, flavorful fish recipe and remembered Cara’s for Jalapeno-Baked Fish. The list of ingredients was simple, and I had most of already in my kitchen. I ran across the street to Bazaar and picked up some Bassa fish, also known as Flounder, and made a slightly different version. My stomach was talking out loud to me as I was cooking, so I loved that this took about 25 minutes to make from start to finish.
Chili Baked Flounder slightly adapted from Cara’s Cravings
2 fillets of flounder, rinsed
1 can diced tomatoes
2 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
1 Thai chili pepper
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
1 sweet potato, peeled and sliced into 1/2 inch rounds
Preheat oven to 400*
Put the sliced sweet potato in a microwave safe dish and microwave on high for 4 minutes.
In a blender, 3/4 of the tomatoes and the garlic, cilantro, pepper, and lemon juice. Blend. Stir in the rest of the tomatoes.
Spray an oven safe dish with some Pam. Layer the potatoes on the bottom.
Salt and pepper both sides of the fish and lay the fillets on the potatoes. Top with a layer of the sauce (you will have some left over).
Cook in the oven for 30 minutes.
I served this with some steamed zucchini, fresh cilantro, and the extra sauce on the side.
Cara always does such a wonderful job of creating light and healthy dishes with a ton of flavor. The chili really kicked through this, but became milder when eaten with the flaky fish and sweet potato. The fish was fabulous. I had never had flounder before: it is slightly sweet and flaky, with a very subtle and un-fishy flavor. The texture is lovely, much heartier than other white fish while still maintaining the tenderness. This dish was perfect for tonight, and we ended up scooping a ton of the sauce (very much like a salsa!) onto the rest of the zucchini until it was all gone. I know I will be making this recipe again, as well as cooking flounder to get some good omega 3s!
Side note: I found at Trader Joe’s almond butter with roasted flax seeds. It is incredible, with such a unique crunch to it. If anyone is looking to boost their O3s, or just for some well priced, healthful almond butter, check it out!
Are you a fan of fish? What is your favorite way to eat it?