Special Diet Information

Coumadin® (Warfarin)
This recipe is safe for Coumadin (warfarin) users.

This recipe contains cheese and some of those who are lactose intolerant may be able to tolerate it.

This is a low sodium recipe.

GERD / Acid Reflux
This recipe contains GERD triggers and those with GERD may wish to avoid it.

Gluten Sensitivity
This recipe is safe for those who are sensitive to gluten. Check for flour or modified food starch in pre-shredded cheese.


"He who has the pepper may season as he lists."
-George Herbert, Poet

The refrigerator light goes on...

I had set out to do this recipe using salmon, but when I went to the market the drum was so much better looking. Take this approach when you are looking at recipes - you don't usually have to stick to a particular fish. Generally speaking you can substitute another whitefish for recipes where the fish is lighter and another dark fish with dark fish recipes.

This recipe has a lot of ingredients, but don't let that intimidate you. About half of them are spices. For some folks this may be a bit too spicy and you can leave the cayenne pepper out if you like.

Monterey Jack Cheese

Legend has it that this cheese was so named because the Monterey dairyman David Jacks produced the cheese and shipped it to San Francisco in the late 1800s. It is a high-moisture, young, mild cheese that melts well. The soft flavor is a perfect complement to spicy Southwestern, Tex-mex and Mexican dishes.

There are lower fat versions made with skim or part skim milk. I have found these to be excellent products with the same creamy taste and melting properties.

1 ounce cheese = 91 calories, 6 fat, 4g sat fat, 0g mono fat, 7g protein, 0g carbohydrates, 243mg sodium, 20mg cholesterol


Mexican Style Risotto with Whitefish

Servings = 2 | Serving size =about 2 cups rice with fish

Cooking Time = 30 Minutes

This recipe can be multiplied by 2, 3, 4.

This recipe does not make very good leftovers.

2 tsp olive oil (divided)
2 Tbsp pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
2/3 cup corn kernels
1 medium onion (diced)
1/2 cup arborio rice
1/8 tsp cayenne (or to taste)
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp dried oregano
3/4 tsp ground cumin (divided)
1/8 tsp salt
fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
4 cups water
1 medium red bell pepper (diced)
1/4 medium green bell pepper (diced)
1 ounce Monterey Jack cheese (shredded)
2 4 ounce whitefish filets (drum, halibut, tilapia, grouper)
1/2 lime (juiced)

Place oil in medium sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add pumpkin seeds and cook, stirring frequently, for about 1 minute, or until pumpkin seeds begin to brown. Add the corn and cook for another 4-5 minutes or until the corn begins to brown. Add the onion and cook for another 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.

Add the rice and stir for one minute, then add the water.

Add the cayenne, paprika, oregano, 1/2 tsp cumin, salt and pepper, then cook for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the green and red pepper and continue cooking until the rice soaks up all the water. (If needed, add 1/4 cup water at a time until the rice is done).

When risotto is nearly done (about 15 minutes), dust the fish filets with 1/4 tsp cumin and fresh ground black pepper (to taste) on just one side.

Place 1 tsp olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, place filets in pan, spice side down. Cook for about 4 minutes and turn over, then cook an additional 4 minutes.

Remove the risotto from heat and add the shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Stir until the cheese melts.

When ready to serve, squeeze the lime over the fish while it's still in the pan.

Divide the risotto between two dishes and top with the fish. Serve.

Nutrition Facts

Serving size = about 2 cups rice with fish

Servings = 2


Amount Per Serving

Calories 557 Calories from Fat 126
  % Daily Value
Total Fat 14g 22%
    Saturated Fat 4g 19%
    Monounsaturated Fat 6g
    Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 51mg 17%
Sodium 306mg 13%
Total Carbohydrates 73g 24%
    Dietary Fiber 9g 37%
    Sugars 14g
Protein 36g
Vitamin A 121% Vitamin C 438%
Calcium 18% Iron 37%
Vitamin K 21 mcg Potassium 1389 mg
Magnesium 153 mg