Tuesday, February 12, 2013

So, is it Chicken or Fish?*

*(and if you don't get that reference, you aren't a pop culture ho like I am...Newlyweds, anyone?)

image courtesy of
About six months ago, our local butcher started taking orders for seafood that has been amazing! Once a week, we get an email with what's available on Monday, place your order and pick up your fresh and bursting with the beauty of the sea vittles on Friday. This week, we bought bay scallops and huge white shrimp from Baja. They are the biggest shrimp I've ever seen. Last time the shrimp were available, I made fajitas with them and they were good, but this week I was itching to make something that was healthy and hearty, but a little fancy. I asked 'the facebook' for suggestions and had an immediate response with a recipe for Moqueca. Like most coastal countries, Brazil has their own version of a seafood stew. The thing that makes this one a fave that I'll make again and again is the coconut milk base; yum! The real deal is made with a fish caught off the northern coast, but we work with what we've got. I bet it would even be delish with some calimari.

What I loved most about this, was how simple it was to prepare. I already had everything in my house to make it, save for some cilantro and green onions and that was only because I'd just thrown out my sad wilty ones the day before. I was a little bit nervous about the instructions to generously salt and pepper each layer, but it really turned out beautifully. Just last week I was watching Giada and she commented that if you salt each layer as you're cooking, it'll turn out perfectly seasoned, whereas if you dump in that same amount of salt at the end, it's just salty.  I wish I'd taken a photo of ours, but it was gone in a flash.

The end flavor was a bit like Tom Kha soup, which is one of my favorite treats, and when I input the recipe to so I could track it (I've been tracking every bite I put into my eager mouth) I was pleasantly surprised that, even using full fat coconut milk, it was just over 200 calories per serving (we got 6 servings out of the batch), plus about 100 calories for almost a cup of brown rice. I didn't add the garlic and oil to the rice that the recipe called for, I prepared it as I always do with chicken stock and water. It was very filling and the flavors were rich and deep and really, really satisfying. I love proving over and over that eating healtfully is usually even more satisfying than that big ole greasy burger and fries that make your guts dance a jig twenty minutes later. Bom Apetite!


Crafty Mama said...

Yep. I'm going to have to add this to my list of things to try!

Nicole Ingersoll said...

Love me some Tom Kha!