Broiled Tilapia with Mustard-Herb Sauce


I remember the first time I made scallops. I went to Whole Paycheck… err, I mean Whole Foods, and picked out some huge, plump scallops that were impossibly fresh. The side dishes were coming together perfectly, I had made a delicate, lemony, wine sauce and things seemed to go flawlessly as I cooked the scallops. They had that crispy, golden brown crust that comes from searing scallops in copious amounts of butter and oil. Based on the appearance, I had made some winning scallops.

As I sat down to taste them I couldn’t help but be pleased with myself. I hardly ever cook seafood since I have this overwhelming fear that I’ll ruin it somehow. After all, fish can be rather finicky.

One bite into the dish and I was completely overwhelmed with emotion by what I had made.

…. Overwhelmed in a bad way. They were awful.

I’m not entirely sure what happened to the scallops but after spending a bit too much money on fish that turned out rubbery I decided I should try and work with cheaper proteins and master them first.

While tilapia is nowhere near the top of the list of my favorite fish, I’ve recently come to appreciate how reasonably priced it is and how easy it is to cook.  Simply drizzling some olive oil, seasoning with salt and pepper, and throwing under the broiler results in an incredibly tender, flaky, moist fish. Add in a side of incredibly simple chive and mustard sauce and you have an entrée in less than 15 minutes.

Broiled Tilapia with Mustard-Herb Sauce

From Giada de Laurentiis

  • 4 (5 to 6-ounce) tilapia fillets
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 1/2 cup plain, Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar or honey
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice (from 1 large lemon)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives (plus a bit more for garnish, optional)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the fish: Preheat a broiler. Line a medium sized baking sheet with foil. Set aside.

Drizzle the tilapia fillets on both sides with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the fillets in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet and broil until cooked through and the flesh flakes easily with a fork, about 6 to 8 minutes.

For the sauce (this can be done while the fish is broiling): In a small bowl, mix together the yogurt, agave nectar, and mustard until smooth. Whisk in the lemon juice and chives. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Transfer the tilapia to a serving platter, garnish with additional chives, and serve sauce on the side.

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