BAKED COD WITH CAPERS, KALAMATA OLIVES, AND GARLIC

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It’s a beautiful warm and sunny day here on Camano Island. As I am typing away, Max, one of my orange kitties is dozing on a towel on my desk, Mt. Baker is out in all its glory (I can see it from my den window), Mr. C is off golfing with a friend, and I have the day to myself. I don’t even have to cook dinner, because I have leftovers from last evening.

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Mommies little helper Max (16 months) – sound asleep

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Time to add his 2 cents worth

Usually I look forward to cooking our evening meal. But when what I have to look forward to, like some more of this delicious cod, I can easily forgo the pleasure of cooking for the taste treat I know is in store for me. And frankly folks, I can hardly wait for dinner and its only 9:58 am!

I am always looking for ways to cook fish that are not only tasty but good for us. And what I mean by “good for us” is that the fish isn’t fried or needs a caloric tartar or aioli sauce to provide additional flavor.

So when I went searching for another way to bake cod, I found 3 recipes that I found interesting. Two featured capers and Kalamata olives; the third lemon, garlic, and either fresh thyme or rosemary. So I took what I thought was a good combination of all three recipes and the following baked cod dish is the result.

And oh-my-gosh the cod was good. You could still taste the fish, but the topping was just a perfect augment. Of course, it didn’t hurt that I started with fresh cod. And baking it at 475 degrees (which was recommended in one of the recipes) was genius. The fish was firm but still very moist.

So if you too want to add more fish to your diet, but don’t want to feel like in doing so you are adding a ton of unnecessary calories from frying, coating, or dipping your fish in tartar sauce, give this recipe a try. Obviously there are a few calories in the caper-Kalamata spread, but nothing compared to a breaded and deep fried piece of fish accompanied with tartar sauce.

Now don’t get me wrong. One of my favorite meals is fish and chips. But my stomach sometimes rebels when I feed it all that grease. With this recipe, there is no after dinner upset or guilt. And although you can’t measure the calories in guilt, it can still weigh you down. And not as in helping your scale show lower numbers, but as in a mind suffering from regret! So don’t let that happen to you. Try this recipe and relax. You are going to love serving this dish to your family. It’s quick and easy to prepare. And you are going to feel so good providing a healthy and delicious alternative to fried fish. A little happy dance before serving the fish would not be inappropriate! Neither would a nice glass of white wine!

  • 1 lb. cod fillet, bones removed and cut in portion sized pieces
  • 1½ T. lemon juice
  • 1 T. extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. paprika
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tsp. fresh thyme or rosemary, lightly chopped
  • 2 tsp. capers, drained and coarsely chopped
  • 2 T. chopped Kalamata olives

Place the cod in a lightly buttered 8×8 or 9×9 glass baking dish. Combine the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic, thyme, capers, and olives together in a small bowl. Spread evenly over the cod.

Bake in a pre-heated 475 degree oven for 10-12 minutes or until the flesh is opaque in color. I serve the cod with plain rice, spooning the juices from the pan over the fish and the rice. Add a salad or veggie, and dinner is ready!

Note: Would be great with any firm, white fleshed fish.

Please let me know if you like this recipe. Thanks