Here is another of my super simple and tasty meals that can be made well even if there are interruptions, which with a house of kids is about as common as an avocado going bad before you use it ( how did I not see it there?).
Petrale sole, caught wild, bought fresh so I had to make it within a couple of days of buying it. Rice, and salad. Does it please everyone in my family? No, Rex won’t eat fish or salad. So he got hot dog, grapes and rice. If he was a baby I’d call that meal “choking hazard delight!”
Our family this night was myself, Viv, Rex and our neighbor gal pal ( 10 years old) Gracie. She is far less picky than my kids so she is a delight to feed.
First, I make the rice. Much to Chef Husband’s chagrin I, like my father before me, I love the rice in the bag. Sorry, rice is my Achilles heel and I can’t take the time to spend 40 minutes making the kind of rice he does. Boil in a bag of salted water and then after I drain it stir in a bunch of butter. The kids love it, and darn it is tasty.
Meanwhile, I take the fish out and lay it on a paper towel. Good to get the moisture out and let it rest. It’s pooped.
Then set up my work station. Flour, egg mixed with a little milk, breadcrumbs with dried oregano.
The fish goes in the flour first. Then the egg, then the bread crumb. After that trip through three bowl lane the fish is tired again and needs to rest. Back to a paper towel while it all sets. It works out better this way. ( note: Rex’s dinner is ready to go nearby)
Then I go to the garden and pick our lettuce. Our best crop of 2012. Wash and drain it. drizzle a little ranch dressing on it because universal truth everyone loves ranch dressing. I’m not kidding around with oil and vinegar, little bit of ranch, not a ton, and my daughter eats salad.
I get the plates and forks ready because the fish takes no time to make. I heat up the pan on low with olive oil, place the sole in the pan with a little chunk of butter. Not to get all Paula Dean, but butter does make things better. Everything.
Then I go to the backyard and yell for Gracie and Vivien to come in for dinner. Each side of the fish takes one minute. No more. I ask the girls where Rex is. They go to get him and as I am about to put the next fish in the pan I realized the yelling for him has gone on to long. I turn off the pan.
“Where is he?” I yell out.
The girls say they don’t know. Visions of him hurt and unconscious in the yard cause me to run out of the house into our back, back yard ( it’s long and large). I scream his name with no response. Then I find Rex looking downcast, sitting by himself by the fence in the wood chips.
“Rex, are you feeling sad?” He nods his head. I think I know what happened.
“Do you feel like the girls left you?”
“Yes, I want to play.”
“But, I called you into dinner.”
“But, I want to play.”
“It’s still early and dinner won’t take long. Then you will still have time to play, okay?”
“Okay.” I pick him and we walk and I explain to the girls that they need to be like the Marines and not leave a man behind. Always bring him up with you when you come in.
Now, they are all at the counter and I make the rest of the fish. I serve them the salad, chopped, rice and fish. Then I finish making my portion of it all and by then Rex is done and I sit down to eat ( three seats at the counter). They had juice, I had a French Rose.
The girls clean their plate and then ask for more rice. Success.
4 pieces of fresh petrale sole
1/3 cup of flour
1 tablespoon of milk
1/3 of a cup of breadcrumbs ( store bought)
a couple of pinches of dried oregano
1 table-spoon of butter per two fish