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by Teresa Farrell, RD, LD Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Brainerd Clinic
Fish! Fish! Fish!
Is everyone enjoying the lakes after a long winter? If you are a true Minnesotan, you were putting a line in the water as soon as Fishing Opener was announced!
In addition to fishing being an enjoyable pastime, fish are tasty and a lean protein option. What’s not to like? The American Heart Association recommends 4 ounces of fish twice a week to boost your omega-3 fatty acid intake, which may reduce your risk of heart disease. In terms of omega-3 fatty acids, fattier fish provide more than our local fish. Some fatty fish to include in your diet are salmon, halibut, mackerel, herring, sardines, albacore tuna, and white canned tuna. In addition to reducing your risk of heart disease, omega-3 fatty acids help with cognitive function (brain development and memory) and normal growth and development.
Though local lake fish may not be as high in omega-3s they are a lean source of protein. A 3 ½ ounce portion of walleye, bass or sunfish provides an average of 120 Calories, 1-3 grams of fat and 25 grams of protein.
There are many ways to prepare fish, frying is an old standby, but how about trying your fish baked, broiled or even grilled. There are special grilling baskets available for grilling fish (and vegetables among other things), these can be found in local stores and online. Fish can also be cooked in a foil packet either in the oven or on the grill. Some different ways to use fish is fish tacos, fish soup, fish burgers, fish on your green salad and the list goes on!
To enhance the flavor of fish try using some herbs and spices, and lemon or lime juice. An easy, tasty marinade could include olive oil, garlic, dried basil, da ash of salt, black pepper, lemon juice and parsley. Other ingredients commonly used are onion, lemon zest, dill and even cayenne pepper. Adjust the ingredients to your taste preference.
Fabulous Fish Recipes from North Country Folks
Walleye Crab Cakes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1-pound walleye, chopped
8 ounces of crab meat
¼ cup melted margarine or butter
2-3 green onions, chopped
¼ cup red bell pepper, chopped
¼ cup light mayonnaise
½ cup seasoned bread crumbs
1 pinch Old Bay Seasoning
1 dash Dijon mustard
Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
¼ cup breadcrumbs to roll the cakes in
Mix all the ingredients except the ¼ cup breadcrumbs. Form into small patties for appetizers or larger ones for an entrée. Roll the cakes in the ¼ cup breadcrumbs, place on a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with non-stick spray. Bake in the oven on top rack for about 15 minutes, flipping once, until golden brown on both sides.
Serving: 1 large fish cake, 1/6 of the recipe
Nutrition facts per 1 cake: 234 Calories, 24 grams protein, 11 grams fat, 334 mg sodium
Serve with Lemon Dill Sauce, which is a nice alternative to tartar sauce.
Lemon Dill Sauce
1 cup light mayonnaise
¼ cup skim or 1 % milk
½ tablespoon dried dill
½ tablespoon dried parsley
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 garlic clove, chopped
Pepper and salt to taste
Mix all ingredients together and serve with fish.
Serving size: 1 tablespoons
Nutrition facts: 30 Calories, 0 grams of protein, 2.5 grams of fat, 77 mg of sodium
Enjoy the summer fishing season and have fun trying some new ways to serve fish!
Teresa Farrell is a Registered and Licensed Dietician at Essentia Health.
Essentia Health is guided by the values of quality, hospitality, respect, justice, stewardship and teamwork. From emergency care to convenient care, family care to speciality practice, Essentia Health delivers on its promise to be “Here With You” in the Brainerd Lakes Area. Learn more at www.essentiahealth.org.