Thursday, May 5, 2011

Moroccan Seasoned Fish

When I was living in Spain, I went to Morocco for a week and fell in love with the food. I'd never had meat cooked with sweet, cinnamon flavors, nor had I ever thought such a combination would taste good. There was fresh mint tea available every day and it seemed like everything I tried was amazing. Not everyone agreed with me, as there are tons of spices and exciting flavors used in this kind of cooking. If you're even a little bit adventurous with the food you eat, you'll probably like this fish since the flavor isn't too extreme or unfamiliar. During my trip to Morocco, I really didn't have an interest in cooking Moroccan food on my own and was content trying everything around me. Oh how things have changed since then...

Years ago, my aunt gave my mother one of Annabelle White's cookbooks. While flipping through the pages (this is one of my favorite lazy day activities), I came across this recipe for "Moroccan Seasoning for Fish Fillets" and decided I had to give it a try. In the original recipe, the fish is fried, but to keep this a little healthier and get more out of the sauce, I baked it. So not only is this fish healthy and delicious, it's also really easy! You could have it thrown together and cooked in 30 minutes (20 of which are spent in the oven). Annabelle finely chops all of her herbs and onion, but you can just put everything in a food processor and pulse it until it has a pesto-like coarseness.

Serves 4
Adapted from Annabelle White's Best Recipes
Prep time: 5 minutes
Baking time: 20 to 25 minutes

4 pound of white fish (think along the lines of snapper or tilapia)
salt and pepper
1/3 cup onion
1 clove garlic
1/3 cup cilantro
1/3 cup parsley
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon paprika
1 lemon, juiced
1/3 cup olive oil
pinch of cayenne pepper

Sprinkle a little bit of salt and pepper on the fish. Place in an oven safe baking dish. In a food processor, combine all of the remaining ingredients. If you do not have a food processor, finely chop the onion and herbs and mince the garlic before combining everything. Pour this over the fish and allow to marinate for 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 400F. Bake the fish for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through and flakes.

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