June 23, 2012

Fish Fillets with Lemon, Butter, Caper Sauce

This is one of Stephen's all-time favorite recipes. When we first got married, he had a list a mile long of food he HATED. Onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, fish... He was the pickiest member of his family. Although his brother Joe might give him a run for his money, out of sheer randomness. Who on earth doesn't like BEANS?? Anyway. Most of the foods on his list he has since grown to appreciate, and the first time he took a risk and had Parmesan-Crusted Tilapia with a Lemon Butter sauce at a fancy restaurant, he was hooked! (hee hee) We were determined to find a recipe to match it, and although our fish isn't parmesan crusted, our sauce is pretty killer, we think. We made it once while visiting my Grandma (we're the kind of guests who come visit and cook for YOU the whole time!) and she still talks about it every time food comes up, period. You could make this with any light fish fillets, we used tilapia for years, tried Mahi Mahi tonight and it was delicious! We've never been brave enough to risk "fresh" supermarket fish, we just use frozen fillets. It's quick, easy, and as long as you go easy on the sauce, not bad health-wise, I would think!

Fish Fillets with Lemon, Butter, Caper Sauce
Printable Recipe

1 Tb olive oil
1 Tb capers (drained)
1/2 cup chicken broth
juice from one lemon
pinch of salt
3 Tb cold butter, cut in chunks

Thawed fish fillets (makes enough sauce for 4-6 fillets)
olive oil
1/4 cup flour
salt and pepper

Pat fish dry, season both sides with salt and pepper. Put flour in medium bowl, add fish, toss or sprinkle or whatever till they're lightly coated. Heat enough oil to just cover the bottom of a large frying pan. Add fish when oil starts to shimmer, BEFORE it smokes or crackles! Cook on medium heat, flip when the edges turn opaque.Cook fish till golden brown on each side.

While fish is cooking (or before) heat 1 Tb oil in small saucepan on high heat. Add capers, crush a few, fry till they start to brown a bit. Add chicken broth and lemon juice, bring to boil, boil 5 minutes till it reduces a little. Remove from heat, stir in pinch of salt and cold butter until melted. Cover and set aside.

Top fish with sauce and enjoy!! The fish may look heavily battered, but it isn't, its very light and crisp. The sauce is so simple, but somehow the capers, instead of just tasting like pickles, add a vinegary bite that Stephen says makes him think of fish and chips. I must also acknowledge that he is the fish-cooking afficionado. :) We always have it with wild rice pilaf. (Be patient with my pictures, I'm still learning!!)


  1. it really is that easy! Except I throw half a cup of white wine into the sauce..

    1. This is true... I just never have white wine around :)


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