Vanilla pistachio tilapia…try saying that ten times fast! Or try making it four times like I did just to get this recipe right. I’ve never been more determined with a recipe than I was with this one. This used to be served at one of our favorite restaurants and they replaced it with swordfish. It’s still good but just not the same without the tilapia. So, of course, I tried recreating it so I could still enjoy it along with all of you! I know you’re probably thinking “vanilla with fish?” but the sweetness of the vanilla is played right along with the saltiness of the pistachios. It’s not like you’re eating a vanilla frosting with the fish…that’s just wrong.
Now, the reason it took me four tries with this recipe is because I kept burning the pistachios. You gotta keep a close eye on it, but I promise it’s worth it. God speed!
2 tilapia filets
2 cups pistachios
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
Set your broiler to low and grease a baking sheet. Pat the tilapia dry and lightly brush the olive oil onto both sides. In a food processor or small blender, pulse the pistachios and vanilla extract together in to small bits, almost to a powder. You can also hand crush the pistachios by placing them in a plastic bag and crushing them with a mallet. (We need to get our anger out somehow…). Once combined, roll the tilapia in the pistachio mixture and place on the greased baking sheet. Cook the tilapia on the bottom shelf of your oven for 8 minutes. Turn the broiler off and keep the oven door shut for the next 5 minutes. As I mentioned earlier, keep a careful eye on it though, you don’t want it to burn.
I know sushi is a Japanese concept, but as of late I have been eating it more and more in an Italian fashion.
Shout out to Gran Caffe L’Aquila in Philadelphia for giving me the joy of combining my two favorite cuisines. The concept is Japanese, but the flavors are Italian. The first recipe is savory and the second is sweet. They wont disappoint. And while I’m on a roll here (haha pun totally intended)
Get out to local fusion spots and embrace the melting pot of cultures America is so known for. (i.e I just heard of a new French & Lebanese spot called Cafe La Maude in Philly as well) I mean the world is your oyster. Support local restaurants and cafes! Not only will it be an enjoyable outing, it will help spark creativity in your own kitchens and cooking endeavors. Ok food PSA is over now just go and roll some sushi!
1 slice Mortadella
1 stick/ thin wedge of fontina
1 tbsp. of crushed pistachio
1 tbsp. of fig jam
Lay out the mortadella, smear the jam and lay the cheese in center. Sprinkle the nuts, roll, and slice.
Just like our sultry salads these are palate pleasing ingredients with creamy cheese, crunch of the nuts, salt of the meat and sweet/fruity flavors from the jam.
1 Whole wheat wrap
1 tbsp. Nutella (note for our lactose intolerant folks you can always substitute for peanut butter)
Lay out the wrap and smear the nutella or PB. Lay the banana in the center, roll, and slice.
This is so great as a snack or breakfast on the go. I make it the night before and refrigerate so the nutella serves as a glue and hardens a bit with the cooler temps of the fridge. Popping them in my mouth sitting in morning rush hr traffic.
Hope you enjoy both of these and can email us other ideas (Damndelish@gmail.com) or tag us in photos (@damndelish) of your Italian Sushi creations!