Wheatless Wednesday – Roasted Cod with Fennel, Potatoes and Rainbow Carrots

 

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What do you make for dinner when you haven’t been to the market in days?  I found myself home the other day with just my youngest son, Jackson, who would no doubt wander into the kitchen around dinner time with high hopes of something delicious bubbling away on my stove, thus saving him a trip to a local takeout place.  Looking around my kitchen for ideas, I found my pantry to be a bit bare.  It’s still taken a hit from having everyone around for the holidays and I have yet to properly restock.  I’m also at the end of my first CSA box and have only a few remaining rainbow carrots and a large bulb of fennel plus a bag of mixed baby potatoes sitting on my counter that I had purchased at the market.  So I immediately thought of roasting the vegetables which gives them a wonderful caramelyness (I know, not a word).  That right there would be enough for me for dinner , maybe with a small bowl of spiced plain yogurt to dip them in, but perhaps not a 20 year old on a muscle quest who goes to the gym every day.  Luckily, I remembered buying a large bag of individually flash frozen, wild caught cod fillets and quickly had two defrosting on the counter. Surprisingly, they were completely defrosted in less than an hour. I could have easily sped up the defrosting process by placing the frozen fish (in their plastic bags) in a bowl of cool water but I had plenty of time, this time.  I threw in garlic, spices and a drizzle of olive oil then topped with lemon zest for quite a nice little dinner for two.  Not bad considering I never left the house to go shopping.  It pays to keep a few good veggies on your counter, like potatoes, onions and squash, that have a long shelf-life, as well as some of your favorite go-to foods in the freezer. It certainly makes life easier!

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I really love colorful foods and I’m a complete sucker for the artistic displays of veggies at supermarkets and farmer’s markets.  I can easily walk by bins of brown or yellow potatoes but show me baby potatoes in a combination of white, red and purple or carrots ranging from yellow to orange to brown and purple, and I absolutely cannot resist.  Take those tri-colored potatoes, for example.  I didn’t need them but they practically jumped out of their gorgeous display and into my cart!  Well it turns out that the more colors you eat in a day, the more likely you are to get the wide range of nutrients you need. I’m sure you have heard the term, “Eat the Rainbow”.  Check out the chart and get your food to start working for you!

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TIPS: This meal can also be made as a one pot meal.  Just roast the vegetables for 10 or 15 minutes first, then scoot them out of the way to make room for the fish.  Roast it all together for another 10 to 15 minutes.  Makes for an easy clean up! I prefer to scrub the carrots with a sponge instead of peeling, as so many of the nutrients are on or right under the skin. A good scrubbing will leave the carrot skins clean, smooth and shiny.  Larger, older carrots may need to be peeled as the skins can get bitter.  In slicing wedges of fennel, don’t remove too much of the root end or there won’t be enough core to keep the wedges together.

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ROASTED COD WITH FENNEL, POTATOES AND RAINBOW CARROTS

1 small bunch carrots (4-6)
2-3 fennel bulbs
1 lb baby potatoes (10- 12)
1 tsp chili powder
6 large garlic cloves, coarsely chopped (divided)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme, or 1-2 tsp dried Italian seasoning(divided)
salt and black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil (divided)
4 6 oz pieces skinless cod, halibut, or striped bass fillets
3/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper (or more to taste)
1 lemon

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  • Trim ends of carrots and cut them in half, then cut each half into 4 wedges.

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  • Trim ends of fennel and cut each vertically into 8 wedges with core attached to each wedge

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  • Slice potatoes in halves or thirds (if using larger potatoes, slice into 1/4 inch rounds) and place in a rimmed baking dish with the carrots and fennel.  You can arrange them separately or jumble them all together.

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  • Pre-heat oven to 425° F. Toss 2 tablespoons of the oil, 4 tablespoons of the garlic, the chili powder, 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper.

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  • Roast, tossing once or twice, until golden brown and tender, 20 to 25 minutes.

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  • While vegetables are cooking, prepare fish. Using a zester, peel strips of zest from the lemon. If you don’t have a zester, use a potato peeler and then thinly slice the peels.  Sprinkle zest onto the fish; reserve the lemon.

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  • Meanwhile, place the fish on a second rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of oil and top with remaining garlic, red pepper flakes, fresh thyme and season with salt and pepper to taste. Top with lemon zest.

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  • After the vegetables have cooked for 10 minutes, place the fish in the oven and roast until it is opaque throughout, 10-12 minutes, turning the oven to broil for the last 3-4 minutes.

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  • Serve the fish with roasted vegetables and lemon wedges on the side.

Roasted Cod with Fennel, Potatoes and Rainbow Carrots

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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1 small bunch carrots (4-6)
2-3 fennel bulbs
1 lb baby potatoes (10- 12)
1 tsp chili powder
6 large garlic cloves, coarsely chopped (divided)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme, or 1-2 tsp dried Italian seasoning(divided)
salt and black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil (divided)
4 6 oz pieces skinless cod, halibut, or striped bass fillets
1/8 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper (or more to taste)
1 lemon

  • Trim ends of carrots and cut them in half, then cut each half into 4 wedges.
  • Trim ends of fennel and cut each vertically into 8 wedges with core attached to each wedge
  • Slice potatoes in halves or thirds (if using larger potatoes, slice into 1/4 inch rounds)
  • Pre-heat oven to 425° F. On a rimmed baking sheet, arrange the vegetables and toss 2 tablespoons of the oil, 4 tablespoons of the garlic, the chili powder, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
  • Roast, tossing once or twice, until golden brown and tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
  • While the vegetables are roasting, prepare the fish.  Using a zester, peel strips of zest from the lemon. If you don’t have a zester, use a potato peeler and then thinly slice the peels.  Sprinkle zest onto the fish; reserve the lemon.
  • Meanwhile, place the fish on a second rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of oil and top with remaining garlic, red pepper flakes, fresh thyme and season with salt and pepper to taste. Top with lemon zest.
  • After the vegetables have cooked for 10 minutes, place the fish in the oven and roast until it is opaque throughout, 10-12 minutes, turning the oven to broil for the last 3-4 minutes.
  • Serve the fish with lemon wedges and roasted vegetables.

 PHOTO CREDITS:

Eat The Rainbow Chart –  DBStrength.com

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