I always keep those individually wrapped, frozen tilapia filets on hand for the nights that I haven’t managed to plan much for dinner. They thaw out and cook quickly and take on whatever flavor you want to give them. And ginger is so refreshing that I often have that on hand as well. This is good post-workout noshing, especially if you have mixed grain pilaf and a batch of peanut butter broccoli on hand : )
Start by prepping the ginger and anything else you might want to top the tilapia. In this case I had a jalapeño – I would have included chopped scallion and cilantro or Thai basil if I’d had it on hand. Peel and julienne the ginger, and slice the jalapeño. The steaming effect that happens when the foil package is wrapped up and in the oven mellows the ginger and jalapeño, so you can use a lot and you can leave the seeds in the chile. yum.
Once the toppings are prepped, tear off pieces of aluminum foil large enough to wrap up individual filets and spray them with cooking spray or drizzle with a little sesame oil. Place filets in the middle of foil pieces and season lightly with salt and pepper. Fresh herbs are best, but again I was improvising, so I sprinkled with dried basil from the spice rack.
Now for what my brother-in-law calls the litmengobb – a catchall term for goop or stuff that makes things good. WD-40, duct tape and ruben Russian dressing are all examples of litmengobb. Pronounced lit-men-gawbb.
Put ye faith in the litmengobb. Top the fish with ginger, herbs, scallion, chiles and drizzle with sesame oil, soy sauce, and sesame seeds. Depending on your tastes you might want to add a touch of fruit or something sweet like a little bit of pineapple or orange marmalade. I added a pinch of minced, caramelized red onion. Then wrap up each filet into packets, bake off and slide onto a plate. Make sure to drizzle all of the litmenbgobb in the foil over the fish!
Ginger Jalapeño Tilapia
Yield: 4 filets
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Cooking the fish and aromatics together in foil packets brings everything together in a quick and healthy way.
4 tilapia filets
1.5 cup fresh ginger julienne
1 - 2 jalapeños, halved, sliced
.5 cup picked Thai basil or cilantro leaves
.5 bunch scallions, chopped
1 Tbsp sesame oil plus a drizzle
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp sesame seeds
- tear of foil squares to make packets for each filet and heat oven to 375
- spray foil pieces with cooking spray or drizzle with sesame oil
- place filets in the middle of each piece of foil
- top fish with ginger, jalapeño, herbs and scallions
- drizzle each with soy sauce and sesame oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds
- wrap up packets and bake on a sheet tray for 10 minutes, until fish is cooked