So Day 3 of my self imposed challenge saw me have a very simple but delicious dinner today of steamed tomatoey Sea Bass with steamed rice and vegetables
No fuss at all today, it’s very hot and I should really have chosen this week to do a BBQ challenge, but I’ve heard we are having terrible storms this weekend (for the UK that usually reads a clap of thunder a few gusts of wind and a bit of heavier than usual rain although I will not mock it, we have had some serious weather induced issues here over the past few years… flooding being perhaps the worst) and then next week we’re back to heatwave so maybe next week I will do a 5 day BBQ challenge.
- 4 medium sized chopped tomatoes organic on the vine (I bought at a knock down price as they were very soft and beyond good enough for a salad. Delicious they were too)
- a pinch of sugar to reduce acidity
- a pinch of salt and pepper (I use freshly ground organic black peppercorns in everything and even they have health benefits read here: Black pepper nutritional info. I was also told on my travels around North Africa by more than one person that black pepper is used as an appetite suppressant. I’ve used it ever since but maybe I’m just not consuming it in large enough quantities for it to work, or maybe it is working… oh lord forbid that my appetite would be even bigger without the black pepper!
- a small red onion chopped really finely (Onions are the world’s most used vegetable and although taken for granted as a staple and basis for many dishes they have tons of health benefits:Onions nutritional facts )
- a crushed organic garlic glove (love garlic and here’s why I make sure I eat it every single day: Getting the most from garlic. I wash down 4 crushed cloves every morning with my boiled water and lemon and turmeric kefir… who needs supplements when you can take the real thing like medication?)
- a dash of Worcestershire sauce, a splash of garlic piri piri sauce and a glug of tomato juice (the similarities to a Bloody Mary here made me want to call this recipe Bloody Seabass but it didn’t sound too appetising)
- a good handful of chopped rosemary (I know dill is the go to herb for fish but rosemary I love so rosemary got her turn to shine tonight). This is another one I grow and it’s so easy to grow. Having herbs in your garden or in planters/containers is also lovely if you make sure they are near an area where you sit out or dine out, the aromas are wonderful when caught on a breeze. If you are interested in growing it or the health benefits of rosemary have a read of this: Rosemary: Growing it and why it’s good for you
I let it marinade for a couple of hours in the fridge.
When it was time to cook I put the necessary amount of rice (I chose white basmati) and boiling water into the rice making section of my steamer and mixed in some frozen peas, tiny diced carrots and sweetcorn. Not a lot just a slack handful 😛 I usually give steamed rice 20 minutes. After 10 minutes I popped on the next section with the fish inside it.
I made a case for my fish out of cooking parchment so I could pop the fish in and pour the marinade in as a sauce with it and cook it in the juices. The posh term for this method of cooking if you do not know is en papillote which sounds real impressive but is just French for ‘in parchment’.
10 minutes later everything was cooked to perfection, the fish could maybe have done with coming out after 7-8 minutes but that’s just me being fussy.
On to a plate I popped some fresh washed baby spinach leaves that I have grown myself (spinach is so easy to grow and so good for you but do read this information as it tells you how to get the best out of spinach. Did you know it’s better cooked than raw unless you’re juicing it and that it can block absorption of iron and calcium? Read all about it here: Spinach the good and the bad. I also added some rocket and a big sliced boiled beetroot (I didn’t grow this but this is on my list as I consume heaps of the lovely stuff, it’s so good for you read here: Beetroot … is it a superfood? )
I decided to go for it and scooped some rice and veg into a ramekin to shape it and present it beautifully even though I was only presenting it to myself… but hey I’m worth it. I popped that on the plate beside the leaves.
I lifted the seabass out of it’s papillote and laid it on the leaves and drizzled the sauce from the parchment over the rice and the fish.
I added a wedge of lemon to the side and dumped a sprig of rosemary into the top of the rice mound to make it look really pretty.
The heat of the fish wilted the leaves perfectly and the whole thing was just scrumptious, totally free of fat, tasty and cooked to perfection.
You could use brown rice for more health benefits but I don’t like it so don’t eat it and besides even white rice has some fab health benefits… more than you might think: Rice is good
For dessert I tried to right the wrongs of the spinach and ate some nice high in vit C kiwi fruits, I had two and a handful of blueberries with a couple of teaspoons of fat free fromage frais on top and washed it all down with a pint of carbonated water full of crushed ice with freshly squeezed orange juice and lemon juice to really boost the vit C intake.
Again as with the other two days this is not cordon bleu and it’s not difficult to do, it’s quick, simple, tasty, healthy food which can be prepped and cooked in less time than it takes to find a menu, call a takeaway and wait for a delivery. By buying ingredients on the day you want to use them you can make savings and upgrade to about to go out of date organic produce so they are healthy and cheap. There are no more excuses… get steaming!
2 days to go and I’m thinking of something not so safe for tomorrow… but we’ll see. I’m loving this challenge and I already feel better for it, it’s given me a boost.