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In the Kitchen with Vital Choice

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Alaskan Cod Poached in Wine & Saffron
Our Colorado Home Cook’s recipe test yields a quick, classy fish dish that's low in calories

Alaskan Cod Poached in Wine & Saffron

Welcome to my Colorado kitchen!

This series features me, Michelle — a writer and soccer mom from the Rocky Mountains — my husband and two kids, some beautiful Vital Choice seafood, and lots of regular home cooking.

(Click here to learn more about me, below.)

I want to feature the products and preparations you’re curious about.

Have a suggestion? Question? Recipe you want me to test?

Email me and help to shape this series.


Like most everyone, I’ve taken the new year as an opportunity for a more thoughtful look at how I eat.

And while I wouldn’t say I’m on a diet, I am trying to be more aware of the calories I’m consuming — especially at lunch, when I’m often on my own and scrounging around in the fridge.

So, I’ve taken a new approach and am planning healthful lunches rather than relying on leftovers — and this recipe was a (very successful) attempt to really nourish myself, quickly and easily!

Alaskan cod makes the perfect light lunch
I’m trying to make lunches that feature fairly lean protein with healthy fats, and wild Alaskan cod fits the bill perfectly!

Vital Choice cod is wild-harvested from icy, pristine Alaskan waters, wonderfully moist, and slightly sweet.

Cod is a fish that’s ideal for a calorie-conscious meal, since each 6-ounce fillet has only 178 calories!

A few notes for the cook
I took two portions of Alaskan cod out to thaw the night before, but this fish is also easy to quick-thaw in cold water (in its vacuum-seal package) for 20-30 minutes if you didn’t plan ahead.

The beauty of this meal is that it comes together in just 25 minutes, takes very little prep, dirties only one dish, and is made entirely with pantry items.

Note: If saffron isn’t in your spice rack, you can substitute dried, ground turmeric root, but be sparing with the amount you use, lest it overpower the dish.

This preparation was adapted from a beautiful dish featured in Bon Appétit magazine and serves two, but it would be very easy to halve for one or double for four.

I made this with a dry sparkling wine, because I happened to have some left over from the holidays — but a still, dry white wine would work just as well.

The saffron infuses this dish with a distinctive, yet subtle flavor. I stepped out into the cold just after the dish had come off the range.

When I returned, I was delighted to find my house graced by the lovely aroma of this uncommon spice.

Delicious and so easy — I hope you enjoy!

My rating: 3½ out of 4 stars

Wine-Saffron Poached Cod
Serves 2, easily doubled

Ingredients

  • ½ tablespoon organic extra virgin olive or macadamia nut oil (or oil of choice)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup dry white wine (or Champagne/sparkling wine)
  • ¼ cup water
  • Pinch of saffron
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2 six-ounce fillets wild Alaskan cod
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Directions

  1. Pat the fully thawed cod fillets dry and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat oil in medium, lidded sauce pan over medium heat. Sauté garlic and red pepper flakes until garlic become fragrant and just begins to brown, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add bubbly, water, saffron, bay leaves and drained tomatoes to the sauce pan. I mashed this combination a bit with my potato masher to create more of a sauce (optional). Season with salt and pepper and simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
  4. Lay cod fillets gently on the sauce, cover and gently simmer for 5 minutes or until the fish is just beginning to flake. Please don’t overcook!
  5. Place the cod fillets in a bowl and cover with sauce. Serve warm.

A Note from Michelle

Like you, I have a passion for beautiful-yet-healthy food that’s easy to prepare. 

While I do love making the occasional "fancy” dinner, most of the time I’m short on time and have a house full of hungry people who want to eat NOW.

I’m not a professional chef – just a busy mom who loves to cook and who’s focused on that intersection of healthy and delicious.

I want this series to feature the products and preparations you’re curious about.

Have a suggestion? Question? Recipe you want me to test?

Email me and help to shape this series.

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