Lesson #23: Greek Isles Hot Seafood Salad

Low Carb Cooking 101

I came up with the idea for this dish to please my 17-year-old son, who loves feta cheese, olives, and salads of all kinds. Of course, he’s not really all that sophisticated; he also likes saltines spread with canned chocolate frosting. (Gag!)

Greek Isles Hot Seafood Salad sounds very hoity toity, doesn’t it? It really isn’t, even though it looks impressive. You can serve this dish on individual plates or “family style” on a large platter.

Now, not everyone is a fan of blue cheese. (My husband and daughter can’t stand any of them.) If your family doesn’t like the more pungent blue cheeses, you can substitute Parmesan or even cheddar cheese in this recipe. I have, at times, divided the sauce in half before pouring it over the fish. One half of the sauce gets feta cheese; the other half gets Parmesan. I then divide the fish between two smaller baking dishes. Rod and Judy’s get Parmesan cheese and no olives; the other half gets the feta cheese and olives. (It’s ridiculous what we sometimes go through to pleases our families, isn’t it?)

*** Note: Two pounds of fish may sound like a lot of fish for four people, but I’ve found that it takes more fish to fill me up than it does beef or even chicken. So be generous with the fish. You can always reheat the leftovers. (If you take some Greek Isles Hot Seafood Salad leftovers to work for lunch, package the spinach separately from the fish so that you can reheat the fish portion in the microwave without heating up the spinach.)

So tonight’s dinner is a simple, one-dish meal:

  • Greek Isles Hot Seafood Salad
  • Cold beverage of your choice (Something tart and lemony goes well with this.)

Here’s the shopping list for tonight’s meal:

  • 2 pounds fish fillets
  • 1 16-ounce package prewashed baby spinach
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • pine nuts
  • fresh parsley (can substitute dried parsley)
  • butter
  • 1 large egg
  • heavy cream
  • 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • olive oil
  • jarred minced garlic
  • chopped black olives
  • Kraft Greek Vinaigrette Salad Dressing (optional – to taste)
  • lemon juice
  • ground red pepper
  • ground black pepper

Here’s the game plan:

The night before, take the fish out of the freezer (if you have frozen it) and put it in the refrigerator to thaw overnight.

About forty-five minutes before you want to serve dinner, take the fish out of the refrigerator. Rinse the fillets and pat them dry.

Cook the Greek Isles Hot Seafood Salad according to the recipe instructions. While the fish is in the oven, set the table and divide the spinach among the dinner plates or put all of it on a platter if you are serving “family style.”

Slide the fish onto the baby spinach and sit down to a well-served, relaxing meal.

And, finally, here’s the recipe:

Greek Isles Hot Seafood Salad

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, stems removed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup chopped black olives
  • 2 pounds fish fillets
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1 16-ounce package prewashed baby spinach
  • Greek Vinaigrette Salad Dressing (to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Quickly saute the cherry tomatoes, garlic, pine nuts and chopped olives in the olive oil over medium high heat, stirring and flipping them constantly until the pine nuts just begin to brown. Transfer the tomatoes, pine nuts, and chopped olives to a dish and set aside.

Add the butter to the skillet and cook the fish over medium-high heat on each side or until lightly browned. Transfer the fish to an 8-inch by 13-inch glass baking dish.

Combine the egg and the heavy cream. Stir in the feta cheese and the ground red pepper. Pour the mixture over the fish, then sprinkle the tomatoes, pine nuts, and olives over everything.

Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.

While the fish is baking, wash and dry the spinach, removing any stems. Divide the spinach evenly between four dinner plates.

Remove the fish from the oven and slide the fish onto the bed of spinach. Sprinkle the cooked fish with the parsley, lemon juice, and black pepper.

Serve immediately with the Greek Vinaigrette Salad Dressing on the side for those who wish to use it.

Serves 4 generously.

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