Monday, February 4, 2013

Pan-Seared Tilapia

Garrett and I love tilapia.  We used to eat it once a week, but the grocer runs out by Sunday night -  when we usually do our shopping after an evening soccer game.  Well, thanks to Superbowl Sunday there was no soccer game scheduled tonight, and I could grocery shop peacefully.  Yes, while the world watched a sport that I can't understand (Why do they keep stopping?!) I grocery shopped and worked on a paper comparing Aristotle and Sartre's literary theories.   

If that wasn't winning enough, I scored some tilapia and prepared it according to our usual method - marinating it in lemon juice, garlic, capers, and seasoning before pan searing it with white wine.  Choose any light vegetable to pair with fish.  I went with asparagus.  This meal actually stores really well for next-day eating.  This is also a very fast meal to make, so I commonly prepare it Sunday nights so I can tote it with me the next day for dinner before grad school.  Now, if only my paper would get written this quickly.

  • 2 tilapia filets
  • 1 bunch of asparagus, ends snapped off
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1-2 tbsp. capers, depending on preference
  • 2 clove of garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 cup white wine

Mix the olive oil, capers, garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and paprika to make the marinade.  Add it with the fish to a plastic bag for at least 10 minutes.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and a frying pan to high heat on the stove top.

Add your asparagus to the water to blanch, just a few minutes.  Strain.  I don't feel the need to dress my asparagus with salt or seasoning, but you certainly can.
Place your tilapia filets in the very hot pan (the high heat is important so the fish doesn't stick to the pan and break apart).  Don't discard the remaining marinade in the bag.  Allow to cook for about 4 minutes, until it almost looks like it is cooked through.  Flip carefully, and sear the other side about 2 minutes.  Add the remaining marinade to the pan along with the white wine.  Simmer until reduced.


  1. I appreciate your 'Gluten-Free' and 'Paleo' tags. I'm an official subscriber!

    1. oh good! now i just need more good GF and paleo recipes...send any my way that you want featured!

  2. This was phenomenal! Made it in a pinch tonight when I realized I had no idea what to do WITH the tilapia I just purchased. SO delic!

    I wanted to give you a "high five" on Twitter, but your social media buttons at the top weren't functioning?

    1. So glad you liked it, Naomi! Try the fish taco salad next time you pick up some tilapia, its another favorite of mine.

      those social media buttons are have to scroll over the EXACT spot to make them work (annoying). I'll tinker with them!

    2. Ah ... you're right! Somewhere near the spot where the wing meets the bird's body :)

  3. This made for a very nice, quick family dinner. Very tasty - even if I only had frozen tilapia!

    1. So glad your family enjoyed it, Shari. Great to know it works with frozen tilapia!

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