Diabetes Quick Fix: Cajun Bronzed Mahi-Mahi with Rice and Spinach Pilaf

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This bronzed mahi-mahi is an alternative to blacked fish. It can cook indoors without smoke and this method of cooking keeps the fish moist. The secret is to keep the skillet at the right temperature. The fish should take 7 to 8 minutes to cook. If it takes much longer, the skillet is not hot enough.

Using the Cajun spice mixture given in the recipe cuts down on the amount of salt found in prepared Cajun spice seasoning mix.

A pilaf is a rice dish that originated in the Middle East. The rice is first sautéed in a skillet, and then the liquid is added.

Helpful Hints:

— Any type of firm fish such as grouper, farmed tilapia or catfish can be used.

Countdown:

— Start rice

— Mix spices.

— Make fish.

— Finish rice.

Shopping List:

To buy: /4 pound mahi-mahi fillet, 1 small bottle cayenne pepper, 1 bottle garlic powder, 1 bottle dried oregano,1 bottle dried thyme, 1 package long-grain white rice, 1 small bottle/can low-salt tomato juice*, 1 bag washed, ready-to-eat spinach

Staples: olive oil.

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CAJUN BRONZED MAHI-MAHI

Recipe by Linda Gassenheimer

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried thyme

3/4 pound mahi-mahi fillet

1 tablespoon olive oil

Mix cayenne pepper, garlic powder, oregano and thyme together. Spoon half of spice mixture onto one side of the fish, pressing it into the flesh. Heat a skillet over high heat and add the oil. When it is very hot, add the mahi-mahi, seasoned side down. Spread remaining spice mixture over top of the fish. Cook until the underside is bronze in color, 3 to 4 minutes. Cook second side 3 to 4 minutes or until cooked through. The fish is ready when a knife inserted into the flesh shows opaque rather than translucent meat.

Yield 2 servings.

Per serving: 211 calories, 73 calories from fat, 8.1 g total fat, 1.4 saturated fat, 5.1 monounsaturated fat, 126 mg cholesterol, 151 mg sodium, 1.5 g carbohydrate, 0.6 dietary fiber, 0 g sugars, 31.7g protein

Exchanges: 5 lean meat

RICE AND SPINACH PILAF

Recipe by Linda Gassenheimer

2 teaspoons olive oil

1/2 cup long-grain white rice

1 cup low-salt tomato juice*

1 cup water

3 cups washed, ready-to-eat spinach

Heat olive oil in a medium-size nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add rice and sauté 1 minute. Add tomato juice and water. Bring to a simmer, lower heat, cover and gently simmer 15 minutes. If pan becomes dry, add a little more water. Remove from heat and stir in the spinach. Toss until it wilts in the heat of the rice.

Yield 2 servings.

Per serving: 240 calories 45 calories from fat, 5.1 g total fat, 0.7 g saturated fat, 3.4 g monounsaturated fat, 0 mg 50 mg sodium, 43.8 g carbohydrate, 2.2 g dietary fiber, 4.6 sugars, 5.5 g protein

Exchanges: 2 1/2 starch, 1 vegetable, 1/2 fat

* Look for low-sodium tomato juice containing per cup (8 ounces): 41 calories, 10.3 g carbohydrate, 24 mg sodium.

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(From “Fast and Flavorful Great Diabetes Meals from Market to Table” by Linda Gassenheimer, published by the American Diabetes Association. Reprinted with permission from The American Diabetes Association. To order this book call 1-800-232-6733 or order online at www.shopdiabetes.org)

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