Cajun My Tilapia

Seafood is a big catch in our house. And finding different ways to prepare it to keep the famished fish and finicky sharks wanting more is always my challenge.
Today I decided to visit New Orleans. But I lightened up the traditional deep fried catfish and cooked up crisp and delicious cornmeal covered tilapia. The extra challenge here was with my finicky shark, as he loves fish, but picks the breading off all the time. This time he ate all of it! I was so thrilled. And this meal is Gluten Free and Dairy Free-great for an autism strict diet. I also added a fluffy pile of white rice and tangy black beans to complement the fish. And a nutritious pile of spinach topped with mangos, ground walnuts and balsamic vinegar and olive oil round out the meal.
And the kicker-the entire meal takes only 30 minutes.
*Tip: Prepare rice, then beans, then fish, and finally salad.
Look at that moist and flaky fish!
Black Beans and Rice
White Rice:
Combine 2 cups of rice, rinsed and drained and 4 cups of water in rice cooker and set to steam. When done fluff with fork and serve.
Tangy Black Beans:
2 15oz cans of black beans, rinsed and drained
1 bell pepper, diced
1 red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp chicken bouillon
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
pince salt
1 Tb vinegar
1/2 cup water
1 Tb canola oil
Sauté vegetables excluding black beans and cilantro, in canola oil in medium saucepan until tender, about 5-8 minutes. Add seasonings and bouillon and sauté 2 minutes more.
Add black beans, cilantro, vinegar and water to pot. Stir well. Bring to boiling. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and serve over rice.
Serves 8. Prep 5 min. Cook 30 min.
Cajun “Fried” Tilapia
1 lb tilapia filets
1/4 cup corn meal
1 tsp Cajun seasoning
Dash salt
1 Tb canola oil for frying
Preheat the canola oil in large skillet over medium heat. Combine corn meal, Cajun seasoning and salt. Sprinkle mixture evenly over fish filets.

“Fry” fish filets in scant amount of canola oil, about 4 minutes per side, until fish flakes with fork and is lightly golden.
Serves 4. Prep 2 min. Cook 8 min.
Simple Spinach Mango Salad
4 cups baby spinach
1 mango, peeled sliced
4 Tb walnuts, chopped
2 Tb balsamic vinegar
2 Tb olive oil
Distribute the salad ingredients evenly on each of 4 plates. Drizzle with 1/2 Tb each vinegar and oil.
To Serve:
Spray 3/4 cup measure with cooking spray, scoop rice into cup and place on plate. Ladle 1/2 cup bean mixture over rice. Serve alongside fish filets placed over shredded cabbage and spinach salad.



For your finicky sharks, do not let any foods touch, cut filets into strips and serve with ketchup, as pictured below. Make the salad simple. The kids loved it!