Here is an elegant and simple way to prepare tilapia, or other light white fillet fish. I have been exploring our Spice Blends, and the fragrance of Moruno seemed perfect for a delicately flavored fish like tilapia. This Moruno Spice Blend has just the right notes of coriander, cumin and saffron to enhance the clean flavors of fresh fish. My rule of thumb is to make one half pound of fish for each person.
1 tbs. Arbequina 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 lb. Tilapia fillet, or similar
1 tbs. flour
1 heaping tsp. Moruno Spice Blend
plus 1 half tsp. Moruno Spice Blend
Kosher salt to taste
Dry white wine for deglazing the pan (I used Soave)
Rinse fillets in cold water quickly and pat dry with paper towels. Make sure fillets are as dry as possible. Add the heaping teaspoon of Moruno Spice Blend to the flour, add salt to taste (go lightly here so as not to overwhelm the other flavors with salt) and mix well. Heat the olive oil at medium heat so that it will be hot enough to create a sizzle when you put the fish into the pan. Lightly dredge the fillets in the flour, salt and spice mixture shaking off excess. Gently put the coated fillets into the pan, and cook for about 1 minute until the edges turn slightly golden. Turn carefully with a spatula without breaking the fillets and cook the other side for another minute or so.
Remove the fillets from the pan to a warm plate and set aside briefly. Pout off most of the oil, leaving a light coating in the pan with the browned bits. Return the pan to the heat and deglaze with enough wine to cover the bottom of the pan. Return the fillets to the pan, sprinkle with the remaining Moruno Spice Blend, adjust the heat to low, and cover the pan. Check the fish in a minute or two, cooking until the fish is white in the thickest part of the fillet. When the fish is ready, move it with a spatula from the pan to a warm platter. Continue to cook the pan juices, adding a bit more wine if the pan is drying out, and scrape the bottom with a wooden spatula to integrate the brown bits into the pan sauce. Pour the sauce over the fish and serve immediately.
A tomato salad dressed with Arbequina Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Garnacha Vinegar (we love this vinegar because it complements flavors, it does not obliterate them as so many vinegars do), a crusty loaf of Italian bread and a good crisp Soave makes a wonderful light summer meal.