Cooking on deadline: Pan-seared fish with tomato basil


Pan-seared fish with tomato basil relish is pictured in New York.

Pan-seared fish with tomato basil relish is pictured in New York. Photo by: Laura Agra via AP


Katie Workman/The Associated Press



It's summer. It's hot. And we still need to make dinner. 


We want it to be light, and we want it to be fast, and we want it to be seasonal. We want it to be easy, and we want it to be delicious, and if we are lucky it will also be pretty. 


This fish dish is an easy-breezy summer offering. If you have eaten or made tomato bruschetta before, then this topping will surely look familiar. It's basically the same simple tomato mixture frequently used to top olive-oil slicked pieces of toast, but here it has a new perch on top of the fish (hey, maybe even on perch!). 


Four ingredients, including the fish (no, I don't count olive oil, salt and pepper), about 20 minutes, and look -- the nicest summer meal. The stove is on for all of 10 minutes, the tomato-basil topping is a no-cook proposition. I kind of think this needs nothing else on the plate. But obviously, any potato or rice or grain would be a nice addition for a more complete meal. 






Servings: 4 


Start to finish: 25 minutes 




3 cups cored, seeded and diced ripe tomatoes (about 3 large tomatoes) 


4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided 


1/4 cup slivered fresh basil leaves 


1 teaspoon minced garlic 


Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste 


4 6-ounce pieces flounder, barramundi, tilapia, cod, or other mild white fish 




■ Combine the tomatoes, 3 tablespoons olive oil, basil, garlic, and salt and pepper in a medium-size bowl. 


Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season the fish with salt and pepper and sear for about 4 minutes on each side, without moving it around too much, until browned and cooked through. 


■ Transfer the fish to individual plates. Place tomato mixture on the side or top of the fish and serve hot. 


Nutrition information per serving: 282 calories; 117 calories from fat; 13 g fat (2 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 79 mg cholesterol; 106 mg sodium; 6 g carbohydrate; 2 g fiber; 4 g sugar; 34 g protein.



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