When it comes to delicious, easy-to-make dishes, I'm a serial monogamist. I'll make the same dish again and again. Some might call it boring; I call it smart.
Cod paired with grape tomatoes, shallots, olives, and thyme simmered in balsamic vinegar topped with a squeeze of lemon is one of those dishes from which I’ve never strayed. Served with fluffy wild rice, it’s a satisfying and tasty weeknight dinner.
When I first started making it more than five years ago, cod served as a cheap, weeknight protein. Now, at nearly $17 a pound at Whole Foods, the sustainably caught variety is a splurge.
Due to the declining populations of cod, the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program says to avoid trawl caught Atlantic cod from the U.S. and Canada. Hook-and-line caught cod is more sustainable, especially if it’s from Iceland, which garners a “best choice” rating.
Cod with Grape Tomatoes, Olives, and Thyme
For 2 people
1 pound of cod (hook-and-line caught Icelandic, preferably)
1 large shallot, diced
1-1/2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
½ cup olives (kalamata or nicoise work best), halved
6 sprigs of thyme leaves, plucked from the stem
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 – 4 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
2 lemon wedges, one per plate to serve
In a medium size sauté pan add the olive oil and shallots and sauté over a medium flame for about a minute. Add the tomatoes, thyme leaves, and olives.
Place the oven rack in the middle of the oven and turn on the broiler to high. Brush the cod with grapeseed oil and season it with salt and pepper. Place the fish on a broiler pan and center it under the broiler flame. Cook for 7 minutes (this may vary depending on thickness). Serve with wild rice and lemon wedges to squeeze over the top.