Meatless Fridays at This is my go-to recipe whenever a Spanish saint's feast day lands on a Friday. There are so many Spanish saints, but one example is St. Dominic, whose feast day we celebrated last week. For any Spanish saint -- St. Teresa of Avila, St. Ignatius of Loyola, St. Josemaria Escriva -- this recipe is a great one to pull out of your hat. While not exactly Spanish, it was close enough to carry the theme.

This tilapia dish is so easy you can make it any week night. It is low in fat and loaded with healthy omega 3 fatty acids found in fish and is a great fish choice for kids, too, because it's mild and not bony. You can often find it on sale, so fit it in to your menu when you get it for a good price. If tilapia is not your thing, any mild white fish would do, and I have made the same recipe with catfish, which you can also get frozen and for a good price.

In this recipe, you cook the fish in foil packets, which keeps it nice and moist. You could also use parchment with the same results. I have put the packets on the grill on hot summer days, but, of course, you wouldn't want to do that with parchment.

Light and Spicy Fish

light spicy tilapia 18 fillets tilapia or other mild white fish
salt and ground black pepper, to taste
2 t. garlic
2 cans tomatoes with chiles (hot or mild to taste)
2 limes, juiced
olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Place two large sheets of aluminum foil onto a baking sheet (you'll probably need two baking sheets), and lightly grease about a 12 inch square in the center with olive oil.

Place 4 fillets on each piece of foil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Squeeze lime juice over the top.

Drain about half of tomato juice from the cans of tomatoes and chiles. Mix garlic with tomatoes and chiles in a bowl. Spoon tomatoes and chiles over fillets, dividing among all pieces evenly.

light spicy tilapia 2Bring the sides of the foil together, and fold the seam to seal in the fish.

Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Serve with some Spanish yellow rice or boiled and buttered new potatoes, and a hot vegetable on the side.

Or you can use the fish to make fish tacos, another family favorite.

Copyright 2014 Barbara Stein