Panko-Encrusted Tilapia with Ribboned Asparagus Salad

This is another meal that’s on the quick and easy side.

I chose tilapia for my fish because it is affordable and mild.  I often buy swai for the same reason.  Check it out next time you’re at the store if you haven’t heard of it.  It’s only $3.99/lb around me, even for the version stuffed with a lobster and crab mix.

I usually cook my fish bare with some seasoning, but we’ve been eating a lot of fish lately, so it was time for a change-up.  Panko is much lighter and crispier than ordinary bread crumbs; it makes a big difference.

I also wanted to do something different with the asparagus I had bought.  I ordinarily cook the spears whole on a cast iron grill pan (which is fantastic, by the way).

I served the dish with a chipotle-sriracha mayo.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tilapia fillets
  • Flour
  • 1 Egg
  • Panko
  • Canola oil
  • Asparagus
  • Lemon Juice
  • Almonds (sliced or coarsely chopped)
  • Chipotle mayo (or mayo and chipotle powder)
  • Sriracha
  • Lime Juice

Cooking:

  • Use a peeler down the length of the asparagus from the base to the spear.  Transfer ribbons into a bowl, splash with some lemon juice, and toss.
  • Prepare a bowl of flour, a bowl of beaten egg, and a bowl of Panko.  Heat a pan of canola oil on medium.  Rinse the fish and cut filets in half lengthwise.  Coat each piece of fish with flour, then egg, then Panko, and place into the pan of oil.
  • Flip fish when golden brown (about 2-3 minutes each side).  The fish should be crispy, but if you need it to crisp up more, place in the oven at 350° F for five minutes.
  • In a cup or small bowl, combine mayo, chipotle powder, sriracha, and a bit of lime juice.  Use amounts to your personal taste.

Plating:

Place a bundle of asparagus slightly off-center on the plate.  Sprinkle almonds on top, then lay two pieces of tilapia halfway on the asparagus as seen above.

Plate a spoonful of the mayo, and use the underside of the spoon to draw out the mayo on the plate, tapering at the end.  Do the same with some sriracha in the middle of the mayo for added color and spice.

Footnotes:

If you’re not big on vegetables, you may want to cook the ribboned asparagus to make it more palatable for you.

Ribboned Asparagus recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen.

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