Friday, November 11, 2011

RECIPE: Bacon-Wrapped Whiting

One of my housemates has told me I should advertise my blog as gluten-free while I pursue this Body Chemistry Diet.  I'm not sure I really know what qualifies as gluten-free, so I'll have to do a little more research.  What you can know for a certainty, though, is that for the near future you will not be seeing any baked goods where I have not personally cranked the wheat through the hand mill (which arrived day before yesterday!).  I will make sure to exclude any wheat/grain-based dishes from the gluten-free tags.

For this meal, however, you gluten-free friends won't have to bat an eye.

Bacon has been on my mind a lot lately.  I have heard about some current craze in bacon desserts, and last weekend I saw some bacon-topped chocolate cupcakes in Savoy, a little tea shop in Pinnacle Hills.  I'm still not convinced that bacon and desserts go together, but I'd be open to trying it some day ... some day when I'm not on the Body Chemistry Diet.  Anyway, I picked up some peppered bacon last week and was looking for creative ways to cook fish and thought: hey!  I have these two ingredients!  I wonder if they work together? -- and so I used trusty Google to see if anyone else had the same idea.  They had, but I like to do my own thing.  So I whipped up a simple but delectable dinner for anyone who likes white fish and bacon, together or separately.


1 tablespoon butter
Two sizable white fish fillets (I used whiting, but tilapia would work just as well)
1/2 one chopped yellow onion
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 cup white wine (I used a moscato, which complimented the peppered bacon perfectly)
6 medium slices peppered bacon (prosciutto and regular bacon also works, I hear)
1 tbsp chopped basil (fresh or dried)


Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

All good things start with bacon, so begin by pan frying your bacon until it is about halfway done--that is, until it is beginning to brown, but is still flexible enough to wrap around your fish.  Remove from the heat and set aside.

In the same pan (keeping the bacon drippings, since they're so wonderful), saute the onion and garlic in the butter.  As the onion begins to become translucent, add the white wine and basil and let simmer until the sauce cooks down to about half its original volume (somewhere between 5 and 10 minutes). 

As the sauce cooks, wrap your bacon around your fillets, using toothpicks to secure the bacon.  Place the wrapped fillets in an oven safe glass pan or casserole dish.

When the sauce has cooked down, remove it from the heat and pour it over the fillets.  Place the pan in the oven and cook for between 40 and 45 minutes, or until the bacon is crispy on both sides (turn the fillets over halfway through).

Serve hot, heaping the caramelized onions on top and drizzling with the remaining sauce.

Do remember to remove the toothpicks before chowing down.

VERDICT: This dish is as divine as you can imagine for a simple, easy dinner.  Sure, it takes about an hour to prepare--but a meal like this is worth every second.  The natural sweetness of the white wine and the yellow onions pairs perfectly with the unique taste of whiting and the bold sharpness of the peppered bacon.

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