Family vacations, swimming, soccer, reunions, little league cookouts and other spring and summer breaks leave little time to relax. Adding to the stress is the challenge of finding the time to cook a nutritious family meal your kids will actually eat. By starting with healthy, versatile ingredients, you can make wholesome, kid-friendly meals easy.
For example, U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish can be ready to eat in as little as 10 minutes, which makes it the ideal meal solution for families with busy summer schedules. Tacos or kabobs prepared with grilled catfish are an excellent source of protein and are low in calories and saturated fat. U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish has a mild taste, so even kids who usually turn up their noses at fish will enjoy its subtle flavors.
For the healthiest option, pair U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish with heart-healthy canola oil. Canola oil offers the best source of omega-3 fatty acids of any leading vegetable oil and using it in a marinade can help your family avoid unnecessary saturated fats. The light flavoring of canola oil makes it extremely versatile. It is perfect for salad dressings, stir-fry or in any recipe that calls for cooking oil.
Quick-and-easy recipes with canola oil and U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish make summer meals simple and nutritious. For more family-pleasing meal ideas, visit www.catfishinstitute.com and www.canolainfo.org.
Grilled Catfish Kabobs
1/2 cup orange juice
In disposable plastic bag, mix together orange juice, honey, canola oil, salt and pepper. Add sweet potatoes, mushrooms, onions, peppers and catfish. Marinate 30 minutes in refrigerator. Stir occasionally. Skewer marinated ingredients on metal skewers. Discard any leftover marinade. Grill 15 to 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender when pierced with skewer and catfish is opaque. Makes 3 to 4 servings.
Grilled Catfish Tacos With Citrus Slaw
2 cups prepared coleslaw mix
4 flour tortillas for soft tacos (10-inch)
Preheat grill. Combine chili powder, canola oil and lemon or lime juice in dish. Add fillets and marinate for 20 minutes. Brush marinade over both sides of fillets. Arrange in wire grilling basket coated with canola oil cooking spray. Place grilling basket on grill rack. Grill 6 to 8 minutes on each side or until catfish flakes easily when tested with a fork. To prepare coleslaw, combine coleslaw mix, oranges, red bell pepper and red onion in bowl. In small bowl, whisk together vinegar, canola oil, sugar, salt and pepper. Pour over slaw mixture, tossing gently. Cover and chill. To serve, place 1 fillet on tortilla and top with 3/4 cup Citrus Slaw. Squeeze lemon and/or lime over slaw. Garnish with cilantro, if desired. Makes 4 servings.
Fish Sticks in a Flash
1/2 cup cornmeal
Preheat oven to 475 F. Lightly oil or coat a large baking sheet with canola oil cooking spray and set aside. Combine cornmeal, cheese, garlic powder and salt in a medium bowl. Mix well. Place canola oil in small bowl. Lightly coat each piece of fish in canola oil and then roll in breading until well coated. Arrange fish on prepared baking sheet and bake until golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Serve with Remoulade or Honeybee's Dipping Sauce (recipes follow). Makes 4 servings.
Remoulade Dipping Sauce
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Place all ingredients in food processor and process 30 seconds. Use immediately or refrigerate up to 3 to 5 days in an airtight container. Makes 1 cup
Honeybee's Dipping Sauce
1/2 cup canola oil
Place ingredients in bowl and whisk until smooth. Use immediately or refrigerate up to 3 to 5 days in an airtight container. Makes 1/2 cup.
Canola oil is the healthiest option for achieving the traditional fried taste of catfish.
Use heart-healthy canola oil and your catfish will fry up light and crispy to give you maximum satisfaction from your occasional fried treat.
Eliminate deep-frying disappointment ...
--Maintain a frying temperature of 375 F. If the oil is too hot, the coating will burn from the direct heat of the oil before the food cooks.
--Preheating the oil to a temperature 15 F higher than its optimal deep-frying temperature allows the oil to be at its ideal temperature when cold catfish is added.
--Do not add salt to catfish before deep-frying as it draws moisture to the food's surface, which will splatter when the catfish is added to the hot oil. Salt also lowers the smoke point.