Spicy Cornmeal Cod, Lemony Aparagus Gnocchi

I’m hooked on this dry mix recipe for cod.  It’s eggless so you can make it in a pinch with thawed frozen fish and dry ingredients.  The only off-beat ingredient is gumbo file (fee-lay), commonly used in authentic Cajun cuisine.  It’s made from ground Sassafras leaves and has an distinctive, ususual flavor.  Some people think it smells like eucalyptus.  It can also be used as a thickener in stews and soups. 

Spicy Cornmeal Cod

1/2 to 1 cups cornmeal
1 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp garlic
1 tbsp pepper
1-2 tsps chipotle chile pepper (be careful.  spicy!)
1 tsp gumbo file (optional)
Lemon and olives for garnish

Mix dry ingredients together. Pat fish dry. Coat each filet evenly in mix. Saute fish on medium in olive oil until coating is golden brown and fish is flaky.  Add lemon slice and olives as garnish, if desired.

Lemony Asparagus Gnocchi topped with Chive Flowers sauteed in Garlic Tarragon Butter

A little tart, a little sweet, and very delicious

1 pkg gnocchi
1 bunch asparagus
1/2 lemon, juiced
10-15 chives, minced
pepper to taste
garlic tarragon butter (see directions)

Boil water and cook gnocchi for 2-3 minutes or as directed.  Meanwhile, saute chive flowers in a small amount of garlic tarragon butter for about 5 minutes.  In microwave or on stove top, steam asparagus, adding a small amount olive oil or a pat of garlic tarragon butter for flavor.  Cut up into 1/2 size pieces after asparagus tips are steamed.  In a bowl, toss lemon juice, pepper, chives, and asparagus. Add gnocchi and if preferred, another small pat of garlic tarragon butter to taste.

Garlic Tarragon Butter

4-7 cloves garlic, diced
1/2 to 1 stalk of tarragon
1 stick of butter at room temp

Mash together, shape into a ball or roll, and return to fridge until ready to use.  Will keep for at least a week.

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