Recipe Highlight: Hy-Vee Responsible Choice Seafood for any Occasion

The following three recipes show how versatile Hy-Vee Responsible Choice seafood can be, whether you’re planning an intimate dinner party, snuggling up near a fire on a cool autumn night or planning a down-home party on the bayou.

Any of these dishes pair well with a dry white wine such as a buttery Chardonnay or Elk Grove Vineyards Pinot Noir Rose, 2013.


Herb-Panko Encrusted Baked Cod with Lemon Butter Sauce

Serves 4

All you need:

  • 4 (5 oz each) portions fresh or frozen cod fillets
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp lemon pepper seasoning
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 2 tbsp minced fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp minced fresh parsley
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard, divided
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 (4 oz) stick unsalted butter, melted

All you do:

For the fish:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Pat dry the fish fillets with a paper towel and set aside.
  3. Mix the panko, lemon pepper seasoning, salt, thyme and parsley together in a rimmed dish.
  4. Spread one-fourth of the mustard on top of each fish fillet, then dip the top of fish into panko mixture, pressing lightly to help it stick. Transfer the fish to the baking sheet.
  5. Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

For the sauce:

  1. While fish is baking, place the lemon juice in a small saucepan on medium heat.
  2. Melt the butter separately.
  3. Slowly drizzle the melted butter, a little at a time, into the lemon juice while whisking until slightly thick.
  4. Serve with the fish.

For a side dish, try whole grain brown rice and crispy kale.


Seafood in Spicy Broth

All you need:

  • 1/4 cup Hy-Vee olive oil
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp dried crushed red pepper
  • 1 cup dry white wine, such as Secateurs Chenin Blanc 2012
  • 1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 24 small littleneck clams (about 2 1/2 pounds total), scrubbed
  • 24 farmed mussels (about 1 1/2 pounds total), debearded
  • 20 Responsible Choice sea scallops, washed, dried and cut in half
  • 1/2 cup fresh torn basil leaves
  • French baguette from the Hy-Vee Bakery

All you do:

  1. Heat the oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat.
  2. Add the garlic, bay leaf and crushed red pepper, Sauté until the garlic is fragrant, for 1 minute.
  3. Add the wine and bring to a boil.
  4. Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Simmer until the tomatoes begin to break down, about 5 minutes.
  5. Stir in the clams. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
  6. Stir in the mussels. Cover and cook until the clams and mussels open, about 5 more minutes.
  7. Using tongs, transfer the opened shellfish equally to 4 serving bowls. Discard any shellfish that do not open.
  8. Add the scallops and basil to the simmering broth. Simmer for about 2 minutes.
  9. Discard the bay leaf. Divide the scallops and broth among the bowls and serve with warm bread.

Molly’s Blackened Catfish Recipe

This is one of those recipes that requires a little bit of prep work and some patience, but the wait and the work are definitely worth it. This is another example of how versatile this fish can be. Try this at your next feast for family or friends.

All you need:

  • 2 tbsp sweet paprika
  • 2 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp lemon pepper
  • 1 tsp whole thyme leaves
  • 4 catfish fillets (total weight about 3 pounds)
  • 1/2 stick (2 oz) butter
  • 1/4 cup Hy-Vee olive oil

All you do:

  1. Mix paprika, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper and lemon pepper together. This can be made ahead and stored in a lidded jar.
  2. Heat a black iron frying pan for at least 10 minutes over very high heat.
  3. Cut each of the fillets in half. Melt the butter and mix with the olive oil
  4. Place the spice mix on a plate.
  5. Dip the fish into the butter and oil and then dredge on both sides in the spice mix.
  6. Fry in a very hot pan just a few minutes on each side.

Source: Camp Cook

Grilling Hy-Vee Responsible Choice Seafood: Let the Grill Do the Work

Grilling is one of the best ways to prepare Hy-Vee’s Responsible Choice fish and seafood in the summertime, but it also can be intimidating. Fish is so delicate that a few wrong steps can cause the fish to fall apart

Two of the top tips are to touch the fish no more than necessary – let the direct heat of the grill do the work for you – and to start with a clean surface lightly sprayed with Hy-Vee non-stick cooking spray.

Wild salmon, which is coming into our stores fresh from Alaska for the next couple of months, is great on the grill. So are halibut steaks, swordfish and tuna. Other fish can work well with some extra precaution, and I’ll get to that later.

Plank it:

A popular way to prepare wild salmon is to cook it on cedar planks, which adds nice smokiness and a cedar flavor to the fish. To plank salmon, just soak the plank in water overnight.

Or, if you want to infuse some other flavors, try soaking the planks in smoked porter beer or an oaked chardonnay.

Pouch it:

If you don’t want to take a chance of the fish sticking, cook it en papillote, which literally means cooking “in paper.” If you’re using parchment paper, as the French recommend, use medium-high indirect heat. Add a little white wine, some fresh herbs and vegetables or citrus fruits, like lemon, orange or grapefruit, and you’ve got a meal in a bag.

A foil pouch also works. Just make sure you poke a few holes in the foil to allow the smoke flavor to infuse.

Marinate it in alcohol:

An alcohol marinade can release a new flavor sensation, but be sure not to overdo it. Alcohol is great for tenderizing meat, so don’t overdo it – 30 minutes tops, just long enough to infuse the flavor. If the fish is in the marinade too long, especially if it’s an acidic marinade, the proteins can begin to coagulate and the cooking process can begin.

Some combinations to think about include tequila-lime scallops, bourbon and brown sugar-glazed wild salmon, whiskey and brown sugar-glazed wild salmon, and vodka and wild salmon.

Skin on or off:

This is a matter of preference. If you’re going to remove the skin, start with the presentation side down on the grill, and flip it only one time, after about 4 minutes.

If you’re going to leave the skin on, that’s the presentation side and there’s no need to flip it. Just make sure the skin is crispy and not mushy.

Again, you don’t want to mess with it too much. It will release itself from the grill when it is cooked. Moving it around on the grill tears up the flesh.

Other fish:

Catfish, tilapia and some of the more delicate white fishes generally don’t hold up well during grilling, but you can still enjoy them. Hy-Vee sells stainless steel fish baskets that will hold them together.

Whole rainbow trout also works well. Score the skin on both sides and slip citrus and herbs under the skin to add more flavor. Some of the herbs that work well include thyme, tarragon, fennel, dill, rosemary and oregano.

Don’t ever do this:

One thing you never want to do is re-cook shrimp. You can reheat it briefly – 30 seconds tops –  but any more than that will make it a rubbery mess.

A good way to grill raw, deveined shrimp is to skewer, add some lemon and pepper and grill a couple of minutes on each side. Be sure you use some of the larger shrimp available in our seafood cases. Shrimp is not a Responsible Choice at Hy-Vee yet, but we’re working on it and will have shrimp that meets our environmental standards by the end of 2015.

Don’t overcook it:

One of the common mistakes in grilling fish is to overcook it. Here’s a guide:

Fillets (tilapia and catfish): 1/2- to 3/4-inch thickness, medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes

Firm steaks (halibut, wild salmon, tuna, swordfish): 1-inch thickness, medium to medium-high heat, 10 minutes

Lobster tails: 8- to 10-ounce, medium heat, 8 to 10 minutes

Raw shrimp (not a Responsible Choice): 21- to 25-count per pound, medium heat, 4 to 5 minutes; under 10-count per pound, 6 to 8 minutes, medium heat

Farmed scallops, clams, mussels: under 12 per pound, medium heat, 4 to 5 minutes

Recipe Spotlight: Responsible Choice Seafood Doesn’t Have to Break Your Grocery Budget

When people tell me they’d like to add more seafood to their diets and are looking for some budget-friendly options, I push them toward Pacific cod, tilapia, catfish, mussels and clams.

Responsible Choice swai is another good choice. It’s a product of Vietnam and is very much like catfish. It’s very reasonably priced. Right now, Hy-Vee is selling two one-half pound fillets for $5.

Pacific cod ranges between about $7 and $8 per pound, which is very affordable when you consider a pound will feed four people.

Mussels and littleneck clams run range from about $5 to $6 a pound and can stretch a food budget. Recipes are very basic, using olive oil, garlic and shallots, some fresh Italian herbs and liquid, either white wine or citrus juice. Don’t forget to buy a loaf of crusty baguette bread for $1.99 to sop up that good broth.

Fish tacos are a hot food trend right now, and they don’t use many ingredients, which makes this an affordable meal. The same goes for blackened catfish, which has a lot of spices, but most people have them in their cupboards already, so it’s easy to throw together. This recipe can also be used with swai.


Spicy Tilapia Fish Tacos with Cabbage Slaw

Serves 4.

All you need:

  • 1 pound tilapia fillets
  • Old Bay Blackening Seasoning, as needed
  • 2 cups cabbage slaw mix
  • 1 red pepper, sliced thinly
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 container Hy-Vee peach mango salsa
  • 6 to 10 soft or hard corn or flour tortillas

All you do:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place fish on a prepared sheet pan and season with Old Bay Blackening Season. Bake in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

2. Toss cabbage with red pepper, green onion, rice wine vinegar, sugar and olive oil; season to taste with salt and black pepper.

3. To assemble tacos, place flaked tilapia on tortilla shells. Top with cabbage slaw and peach salsa.


Blackened Catfish with Fresh Lemon

All you need:

  • 2 tbsp Spanish paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 3/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 5 (5 oz each) catfish fillets, skinned
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 to 4 tbsp sweet cream butter, softened
  • 5 fresh lemon wedges

All you do:

1. In a pie plate, combine paprika, cayenne, thyme, oregano, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, nutmeg, salt and pepper.

2. Pat dry the fish and roll in the blackening spice mixture.

3. In a large sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons oil until nearly smoking. Place catfish fillet in pan and cook 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until done. To serve, top each fillet with a little softened butter and fresh lemon wedge.