GINNA PARSONS: Tilapia a kid favorite in our house

By Ginna Parsons/NEMS Daily Journal

This past week, my husband was in Myrtle Beach, S.C., on his annual golf trip. Charlie is a big help around the house, so when it’s just the kids and me, the added stress tends to make me even crankier than usual.
To make the days and nights a bit easier on us, I decided to plan ahead for our evening meals and, specifically, to prepare meals the kids really like. I did not want to come home from work and have them say, “Hey, Mom, what’s for dinner?” and then have them turn up their noses when my reply was something like “tuna casserole” or “turkey Tetrazzini.”
One of their favorites – actually we all really like it – is this pan sautéed tilapia in a lemon-caper sauce. I first wrote about this recipe in a column in 2006, but people often request it, so I’m repeating it because it’s worth it.
This dish comes together in about 15 minutes, but tastes and looks like something you’d get at a nice restaurant. I almost always serve it over angel hair pasta but if you’re not a pasta person – yes, those people do exist – it’s equally good over rice. Steamed asparagus, green beans or broccoli make nice side dishes.

Tilapia with Lemon-Caper Sauce
1 cup less-sodium chicken broth
5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons capers
2 tablespoons butter, divided
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 tilapia fillets
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1⁄2 cup all-purpose flour
1⁄2 cup Panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1 tablespoon butter
Cooked angel hair pasta or rice
Combine broth, lemon juice and capers and set aside.
Melt 1 tablespoon of butter with 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over low heat. While butter melts, sprinkle fish fillets with salt and pepper. Place the flour and Panko in a shallow dish. Dredge 2 fillets in flour mixture and shake off excess.
Increase heat to medium-high; heat 2 minutes or until butter turns golden brown. Add 2 fillets to pan; sauté 3 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Remove fillets from pan and keep warm. Repeat procedure with remaining 2 fillets.
Add broth mixture to pan, scraping to loosen browned bits. Bring to a boil; cook until reduced and thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in 1 tablespoon butter with a whisk. Place pasta or rice on dinner plates; top with fillets and sauce.
Serves 4.
Ginna Parsons is the Daily Journal’s food/home/garden editor.