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August 4, 2012: Tilapia and Asparagus with Balsamic Butter Sauce

So Saturday night I was in the mood for some fish (partly since I missed out on Fish Fridays). And, I had been having a craving for asparagus for close to a week at this point. So I figured it’d be the perfect time to do both!

Asparagus

The asparagus was pretty simple, I had to trim off the bottom of a few of the spears before I washed them. Ideally, I would have steamed them, but lacking a steamer, I opted to put them in about a half inch of water in the pot. At least they stacked up so most of them were above water level and steamed. I also mixed them around a few times so the ones at the bottom wouldn’t be over boiled. They came out quite well after a few minutes – cooked, but still crisp, with that great asparagus flavor (no soggy, wilting asparagus here!)

After that it was time to cook the tilapia I had bought. It was frozen when I bought it but by now it was defrosted. Seasoned with a little salt and garlic powder, I put them in the pot with some oil and cooked them for a couple minutes until done (with a little browning crust). I also now realize that this is the first tilapia I’ve done this summer that was not done in the oven.

Cooked fish! All it needs now is the sauce…

Then, I tried my hand at a sauce. Taking out the fish, I then poured in some balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing. Now ideally, I would have used balsamic vinegar, but I’ll take what I can get. I let that boil for a little bit and reduce (and caramelize/blacken some of those spices that are in the dressing). When I felt that it had reduced enough (meaning a wild guess), I added some butter into the mixture to melt and give it a little more richness.

Reducing the balsamic vinaigrette dressing

 

Plating time – I put the fish and some asparagus on the plate, and added some rice leftovers from my last chicken meal.  Afterwards, I poured a tiny bit of the balsamic butter sauce onto the fish. Just a little at first, to see how it tasted.

Great meal! (With a dash of sauce)

And to my surprise, it was quite good! Despite some burnt parts, it had a lot of flavor – some sweetness, but also some tartness – there was a great blend of flavors which went well with the fish. After taking a bite, I added a bit more of the sauce to the fish!

Great sauce on the fish!

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