Quite often I am asked “So what do you eat?”
“I eat clean,” I answer. “Mostly unprocessed foods.”
“Er… stuff like oatmeal, egg whites, fish, grilled chicken breast, green vegetables. That sort of thing.”
“Oh, you mean lots of salads and no carbs! I get it!”
“Er… no. Not really. I do eat some salads, and I do eat carbs. In fact, I need the carbs.”
“Really. That and clean protein.”
“And fat. I need fat. Like avocado, almonds, natural peanut butter…”
“You eat fat???”
And so on, and so forth.
Clean eating means eating mostly fresh, unprocessed food. It also means drinking plenty of water, no sodas or sweetened beverages, and at least in my case, no alcohol. And contrary to popular belief, clean eating can be really tasty.
Take for instance, that shining example of culinary delight: Fish and chips.
Regular fish and chips consist of battered white fish fried in loads of oil and accompanied with french fries, often served with tartare or some other sauce.
Healthy? Not so much.
Low calorie? (Is that a trick question?)
On the other hand, you can make a delicious clean version, quick and easy, using very simple ingredients.
First of all, you need to remember that in clean eating, condiments are key. They will help you flavor your food, and once you get it to taste good (simple, really) you won’t go back.
At least, I haven’t.
So here it is a version of clean fish and chips, courtesy of my long-suffering husband, who came up with the recipe.
Red Snapper and Kale Chips
2 steaks of red snapper, 4 oz each. (You can make more steaks if you are having company)
Cajun spice to taste (we like Tony Cachere’s)
I Can’t Believe it’s Not Butter spray (or some other nonstick spray)
Nonstick spray (for both the fish and the kale chips)
Fresh ground pepper
1 bunch of kale, rinsed, dried with a paper towel and torn into bite sizes. (Remember to separate it from the center stem, which is kind of woody and tough.)
Baking cookie sheet (I like to use 2 so I can make plenty all at once)
Preheat your oven at 375º F. That will be for your chips.
In the meantime, heat a heavy pan. Spray your snapper with the I can’t Believe it’s Not Butter or nonstick spray on the non-skin side of fish, and sprinkle with your cajun seasoning.
Spray your pan with nonstick spray and brown your snapper on the non-skin side of fish, for about 5 minutes depending on the thickness. Turn and continue browning for another 5 minutes or until done. Remove from pan and put on plate.
Spray your baking cookie sheet with the nonstick spray. Spread your kale on top of the sheet, making sure that the pieces are not lumped one on top of each other. This will help them to bake even.
Spray the kale with nonstick spray, sprinkle with kosher salt* and pepper, and stick it in the oven for 12 minutes or until the edges are brown and crispy. Remove from oven and serve on plate.
*Note: Remember that kale absorbs salt like nobody’s business. Try not to go too heavy with it.
PS. The snapper is incredibly tasty and the kale is better than potato chips. Addictive!