Barramundi, a delicious firm white fish, is sprinkled with blackening spice and grilled to perfection on a panini press. This post is sponsored by NoshOn.It.
I consider myself very fortunate that my kids will eat so many of the healthy foods I put in front of them. Of course like most kids, they would choose chicken nuggets and hot dogs if I let them. But I don’t give them that option very often, and they quite willingly down things like salad, broccoli and fish. We’ve struggled a little here and there on the seafood front, but I recently discovered a way to cook the fish that they like and will eat every single time. My panini press. I don’t make a lot of panini on it anymore but it gets pulled out at least once a week, if not more. And much of that is for cooking fish.
Like any family on a healthy kick, we are trying to get more fish into our diet. The trouble here is knowing which fish is truly healthy for you and isn’t full of contaminants. And if you care at all about the environment, knowing which fish species aren’t over-harvested and the what fishing practices are used to catch them. If we’re going to be able to eat fish 30 years from now, we need to care about sustainability.
So I was delighted to discover barramundi, a firm white fish that is farmed using Smart Aquaculture, a specially devised fish-farming system that minimizes environmental impact. Okay, I know what you’re thinking: Isn’t farmed fish supposed to be less healthy and have less of all those good fats? Although that applies to many farmed species, it is not the case with barramundi. Each 5 ounce serving of barramundi contains 600 to 800 mg of those highly sought after Omega 3’s. And they are farmed with such stringent requirements that there are no detectable levels of mercury, PCBs or other contaminants.
Barramundi is gaining in popularity among chefs and home cooks. I found mine at Trader Joe’s, although Whole Foods carries it as well. Because it has firm flesh, it’s very versatile in cooking and it doesn’t fall to pieces when you try to flip in in the pan. I foresee many great recipes with it, but first I had to give it the panini press treatment. A little blackening spice, a little oil or butter, toss it into the hot press and 4 minutes later, you have yourself a delicious, healthy and sustainable dinner. To make it a little more kid-friendly, go easy on the spices. And if you really want to play to the kids, try cutting it off the skin, cutting it up and putting it on bamboo skewers. My kids love it when I do that and always ask for seconds!
*Note: If you don’t have a panini press, you can still cook Blackened Barramundi in a hot skillet on the stovetop.
Disclosure: This post was sponsored via the NoshOn.It Publisher Partner Program by a leading barramundi producer. All opinions, thoughts, recipes, photography, random tangents and incoherent ramblings are my own.
Blackened Barramundi – Low Carb and Gluten-Free
- 1 tbsp smoked paprika
- 1/2 tbsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tbsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp kosher or sea salt
- 6 barramundi filets
- Butter or coconut oil for the panini press or skillet
- Preheat panini press to medium. If using a skillet on the stove, heat over medium heat.
- In a small bowl, mix together paprika, oregano, thyme, pepper, garlic powder and salt.
- Sprinkle each barramundi filet with a generous amount of blackening spice. Press with back of a spoon to adhere.
- When panini press is up to temperature, with butter or coconut oil (I like to use the Kelapo coconut oil spray). If using a skillet, add butter or oil to the pan to coat.
- Add filets to panini press (you may need to do this in batches) and close the lid. Cook 4 to 5 minutes, or until fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork.
- If using a skillet, place fish flesh-side down on hot pan. Cook 3 to 4 minutes, then flip over to skin-side down and continue to cook until fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork.
- Serve hot, with a pat of butter or mayonnaise on top.