Sometimes I get caught up in finding the perfect recipe, choosing the right ingredients, and making the perfect meal. I can get so caught up in perfection that sometimes I miss out on enjoying simplicity. Food is one of the greatest pleasures in life! I should be enjoying it! Can I get an AMEN?! But that doesn’t mean that it has to be difficult to be enjoyable!
Last week, we spent a long day at the zoo. We planned to eat out on the way home, but I was hot and sticky and felt gross, so I just wanted to go home. I told my hubby I would cook dinner, easy peasy…no problem. Except there was one problem…I DIDN’T TAKE ANYTHING OUT TO THAW!! So, what did I do? I went to my trusty back up freezer stock. I like to always have seafood of some kind stashed away in the freezer. Fish and shrimp are great to keep on hand for quick and easy meals when you’re in a pinch. Blackened fish and shrimp with steamed veggies is one of our favorite simple meals to make in a pinch. Seafood doesn’t always need to be thawed or it takes little to no time at all. I went to my freezer and pulled out two small salmon filets left over from a mostly used up bag, an unlabeled bag of fish that my hubby caught deep sea fishing (We still don’t know what it was but we do know it was fish!), and half a bag of frozen shrimp.
If you are a rockstar at multi-tasking, this meal can come together in less than 30 minutes, easily. While the oven is preheating, I normally season my fish and shrimp, and toss the steamable veggies in the microwave (don’t turn it on yet!). Once the oven is ready, I put the fish in and turn on the stove top to melt the butter and begin cooking the shrimp. Since it takes about the same time to cook the shrimp as it does for the fish to cook, they should be ready around the same time. About 10-15 minutes in, turn on the microwave and steam your veggies. Your broccoli should be ready just around the same time that your fish and shrimp, just sprinkle your broccoli with mineral salt and pepper and you are good to go!
Blackened anything is always a favorite in our house. We all enjoy the savory spices and it’s an easy meal to make. I hope you give it a try and enjoy it as much as we do!
Blackened Fish And Lemon-Garlic- Parmy-Shrimp
For cooking, you will need:
- Large cookie sheet
- Parchment paper
- Fish, any amount, any kind
- Shrimp, any amount, peeled and deveined
- Garlic Powder
- Mineral Salt
- Creole Seasoning (Tony Chachere’s brand is MSG Free) OR Blackened Seasoning (Emeril’s brand is MSG Free) OR you could use a little bit of both, OR you can make your own. There are a lot of recipes for seasoning blends on Pinterest that use common spices. This is all seasoned to taste, OWN IT!
- Dried Parsley
- Grated Parmesan CHeese
- Lemon Juice, Fresh or Bottled
- Melted Butter 2-4 tablespoons depending on how much fish and shrimp you are preparing. If you are wary of butter, you could use coconut oil. Since you are using parchment paper, you could also use coconut oil spray if you are trying to cut back on heavy oil usage and no sticking to the pan
Instructions for the Fish:
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
- Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper
- Spread your fish out on top of the parchment paper (fish can be cooked either thawed or frozen, you may need to adjust the cook time if thawed)
- Brush the melted butter over each piece of fish
- Lightly sprinkle each piece of fish with mineral salt and garlic powder
- Then sprinkle generously with blackened seasoning and creole seasoning
- Lightly top with dried parsley, just enough to add pretty color
- Bake in the oven at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes
Instructions for the Shrimp:
- Sprinkle the same seasonings as the fish over the shrimp and toss to coat all of the shrimp. I recommend rinsing and thawing shrimp in a colander before cooking. Just let them sit in the sink to drip dry. If you are in a super big rush, you can soak them in cold water to thaw faster. When you cook them from frozen, they get watery and won’t turn out as crisp.
- Melt 1-2 tablespoons of butter in a skillet on medium heat
- Add the shrimp to the skillet and generously top with parmesan cheese
- Add a tablespoon of lemon juice, either fresh or bottled. I like the Santa Cruz brand of bottled lemon juice.
- Turn the heat up, somewhere between medium and high. Whatever temperature you are comfortable with should be just fine.
- Frequently stirring, cook the shrimp until they are browned. This normally takes me about 15-20 minutes. The browned edges give them the crispy yummy flavor of blackened shrimp but the parmesan and lemon take it to the next level. All of the butter and lemon juice should cook out leaving you with no soupy sauce in the bottom. (But if you want, you could just cook until the shrimp were done and not browned and then use the leftover sauce over your veggies, Dreamfields Pasta, or rice for an XO.)
For the sides:
Serve with a salad or steam a bag of frozen veggies. I like steamed broccoli tossed in salt and pepper and sometimes just a tiny but of melted butter. Because we already used a lot of butter glazing our protein, I try not to smother my broccoli in it. Salt and pepper is normally good enough for me.
Making it a Meal:
For an S: Cook with butter and serve with non starchy veggies (steamed or roasted in olive oil) or add a side salad with an S dressing.
For an E: Cook with coconut oil spray and serve with a sweet potato or over brown rice, and steamed veggies or add a side salad with an E dressing.
For a FP: Cook with coconut oil spray and serve with non starchy veggies (no added butter or oils here) or add a side salad with a FP dressing.
For an XO: Cook as an S and serve with brown rice or sweet potato and non-starchy veggies.
For lunch, my kiddo likes to eat leftover fish heated on a low carb tortilla with melted cheese. Ya know, fish tacos…but you could also add lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, and salsa for a delicious S! Endless possibilities!!