Cod Provençal with Tomatoes, Capers, and Olives: A Mediterranean Delight
When it comes to seafood, few dishes rival the exquisite flavors of Cod Provençal. This classic Mediterranean recipe combines tender cod fish with the vibrant and robust flavors of tomatoes, capers, and olives. It’s a dish that sings with the essence of southern France, capturing the warmth and essence of the Provençal region. In this article, we will guide you through creating this delightful dish step by step.
To get started, gather the following ingredients:
- 4 cod fillets (about 6 ounces each)
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 can (14 ounces) of diced tomatoes
- 1/4 cup of dry white wine
- 1/4 cup of chicken or vegetable broth
- 2 tablespoons of capers, drained
- 1/2 cup of pitted black olives, such as Kalamata
- 2 tablespoons of fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
- Salt and pepper to taste
Step 1: Prepare the Cod Fillets
Start by patting the cod fillets dry with a paper towel. Season them with salt and pepper on both sides. This step ensures that the fish is well-seasoned and ready to absorb the flavors of the dish.
Step 2: Sauté the Aromatics
In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the finely chopped onion and minced garlic, sautéing them until they become soft and fragrant, usually around 2-3 minutes.
Step 3: Add Tomatoes and Wine
Pour in the can of diced tomatoes (including the juice) and the white wine. Stir well to combine and allow the mixture to simmer for about 5 minutes. This step allows the wine to reduce and the flavors to meld.
Step 4: Introduce Capers and Olives
Add the drained capers and pitted black olives to the skillet. Stir them into the tomato mixture, allowing them to infuse their unique flavors into the sauce.
Step 5: Nestle in the Cod
Gently place the seasoned cod fillets into the simmering sauce. Spoon some of the tomato mixture over the fish to ensure it’s well-coated. Cover the skillet and let the cod cook in the sauce for about 8-10 minutes or until it flakes easily with a fork.
Step 6: Garnish and Serve
Sprinkle the dish with chopped fresh parsley and dried oregano for a burst of color and aromatic flavor. Then, carefully transfer the cod fillets onto serving plates, spooning the tomato-caper-olive sauce generously over each piece.
Enjoying Cod Provençal:
Cod Provençal is best enjoyed hot, right out of the skillet. The tender cod fish absorbs the vibrant flavors of the Mediterranean sauce, creating a harmonious blend of salty olives, tangy capers, and sweet tomatoes. The dish is not only delicious but also visually stunning, making it an excellent choice for entertaining guests or enjoying a special family dinner.
In conclusion, Cod Provençal with Tomatoes, Capers, and Olives is a testament to the Mediterranean’s culinary artistry. It’s a dish that transports you to the sunny shores of southern France with every bite. So, gather your ingredients, follow these simple steps, and treat yourself and your loved ones to a taste of the Mediterranean with this delightful recipe.
1. Can I use a different type of fish for this recipe?
While cod is the traditional choice, you can certainly use other white fish such as haddock, tilapia, or grouper to make this dish.
2. Is it possible to make this dish without wine?
Yes, if you prefer not to use wine, you can replace it with an equal amount of chicken or vegetable broth to maintain the depth of flavor.
3. Can I use green olives instead of black olives?
Certainly! Green olives will add a different flavor profile but will work well in this dish.
4. What are some good side dishes to serve with Cod Provençal?
This dish pairs wonderfully with crusty bread, rice, or couscous. Additionally, a side salad with mixed greens and a light vinaigrette complements it beautifully.
5. Can I prepare this dish in advance?
While it’s best enjoyed fresh, you can prepare the sauce in advance and cook the cod just before serving to ensure it stays tender and flavorful.
- 2 tbsp (30ml) extra virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
- 1 onion, peeled and sliced in half rounds
- 2 large tomatoes (or 3 medium), ripened and diced into small cubes
- 6-7 sprigs of flat-leaf parsley, stemmed and chopped
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme, stemmed (+ extra for garnish)
- ½ tsp red pepper flakes
- ½ tsp fresh ground black pepper
- ½ tsp salt
- 15-20 black olives (preferably pitted)
- 10-15 caper berries (or 2 tbsp capers)
- 4 cod loins
- ½ lemon, juiced
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
Heat up the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion, and cook for 2-3 minutes until the onion is slightly softened and translucent.
Add the tomatoes, parsley, thyme, red pepper flakes, pepper and salt, and cook for 10-12 minutes (lid on), stirring occasionally until the tomato is soft.
Stir in the olives and capers.
On a clean working surface, drizzle the cod loins with lemon juice and season with salt and pepper on both side. Nestle in the cod loin in the pan, on top of the sauce. Garnish cod loins with tiny thyme sprigs (optional). Close the lid and cook for about 5 minutes, until the cod is just cooked through.
Season cod with salt, pepper and/or red pepper flakes to taste (optional). Serve immediately.
Nutrition InformationYield 1 Serving Size 4
Amount Per ServingCalories 1315Total Fat 44gSaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 34gCholesterol 396mgSodium 7665mgCarbohydrates 58gFiber 20gSugar 24gProtein 175g
The information contained herein is subject to change.