Fish for Fridays?

Whether you observe a meatless Friday fast or just want to add more seafood to your diet, fish can be a high-quality, low budget protein to enjoy.

Fish for Fridays? Whether you observe a meatless Friday fast or just want to add more seafood to your diet, fish can be a high-quality, low budget protein to enjoy.

My mom grew up in an era where fish served on Fridays was common place, particularly so in her Roman Catholic family. That was the meal of the day whether she ate at school or at home. This changed in the 60’s when Pope Paul VI relaxed the fasting requirements. Today, we see this tradition more commonly practiced only during Lent.

Whether you observe the faith tradition of a meatless Friday or not, adding more fish and seafood to your diet can be a wonderful way to add healthy omega-3 fatty acids to your diet as well as Vitamins D and B2. It’s a low-fat, high-quality protein that often goes on sale during this season of Lent.

Economics follows the traditions of its people. When Big Macs weren’t selling so well on Fridays in Cincinnati, the local franchise owner developed The Filet o’ Fish sandwich, coincidentally, my mom’s favorite. Sales boomed and a new tradition was born.

In the coming weeks, you’ll see fast food chains amplify their marketing attention on their fish and seafood dishes as well as grocery stores offering fresh and frozen product at a discount. Stock up when you see sale prices and stash the extra in the freezer.

Want to know how to make good use of this protein in freezer meals? Check out my post on fish in freezer meals over on The Kitchn.

Here are some of our family’s favorite fish and seafood dishes:

Fish for Fridays? Whether you observe a meatless Friday fast or just want to add more seafood to your diet, fish can be a high-quality, low budget protein to enjoy.

Tuna Salad with Celery Seed and Dill Weed

Fish for Fridays? Whether you observe a meatless Friday fast or just want to add more seafood to your diet, fish can be a high-quality, low budget protein to enjoy.

Grilled Fish or Shrimp Tacos

Fish for Fridays? Whether you observe a meatless Friday fast or just want to add more seafood to your diet, fish can be a high-quality, low budget protein to enjoy.

Cilantro Shrimp Pasta

Fish for Fridays? Whether you observe a meatless Friday fast or just want to add more seafood to your diet, fish can be a high-quality, low budget protein to enjoy.

Fish Taco Salad

Fish for Fridays? Whether you observe a meatless Friday fast or just want to add more seafood to your diet, fish can be a high-quality, low budget protein to enjoy.

Jambalaya with Shrimp and Sausage

 What’s YOUR favorite way to serve fish?

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Comments

  1. Margery H. says:

    I would love to add more seafood into our family’s diet. I don’t find it to be low-budget, however. Most quality seafood seems to run around $8-12/lb around here (Atlanta). I won’t buy the low-quality farmed fish from southeast Asia due to the extremely polluted and unregulated aquaculture there. Do you have any suggestions to make fish and seafood budget-friendly?

  2. What is that yummy looking deliciousness in the first pic? Need recipe now! lol

  3. I’ll check for specials during this season, but I generally find decent quality fresh/frozen fish to be fairly pricey. And I live in the Florida panhandle, not the mid-West, so I hate to see what their prices look like. The kid has always been a huge seafood lover (oh, his teacher’s face when he wanted to bring a calamari dish to a school function in 4th grade!) so we’ve cooked and enjoyed fish an enormous number of ways. I think his favorite, though, is the seafood mix (shrimp, scallops, mussels, squid, etc) sauteed in a garlic butter sauce. That stuff tends to be cheaper than fish anyway, so we do that one on occasion. I modified it a bit for Christmas (that’s the meal he requested) and turned it into a creamy garlic sauce. Oh, heavens, that was good. It’s probably about time to do that one again.

  4. AlysonRR says:

    We try to eat fish/seafood at least once a week year round. We have quite a few favorite dishes.

    The first is sesame-crusted salmon (the recipe I use is from Marilu Henner’s “Healthy Life Kitchen” from which we have found surprisingly many tasty recipes). Basically you marinate thick but narrow filets briefly in teriyaki sauce then roll in sesame seeds, brown in a skillet, then finish in a 250F oven for ~7 minutes. Yum!

    Next would be my mother-in-law’s smoked salmon pesto pasta: farfalle pasta with sauteed onions, mushrooms, and zucchini. Pesto mixed in, then the pasta/veg/pesto combo is tossed with bite-sized pieces of smoked salmon, which “cooks” them a little (not necessary, but improves the texture for eating with the pasta). This is my daughter’s favorite recipe.

    Fish tacos (with baked or battered fish), fried or sauteed oysters, steamed clams (my son’s favorite) or mussels (my fave), lemon sole with Panko (my husband’s favorite) and seafood melts (tuna or salmon salad or fresh crab or crab/krab salad on English muffins with melted cheddar or Gouda on top) all make frequent appearances.

    I’m lucky to be in the Northwest, and to have a mom with waterfront that has harvest-able seafood (crab and oysters – plus we trade oysters for clams with a neighbor) as well as a brother in Oregon who keeps us in salmon. Obviously that makes most of our seafood local and sustainably harvested! But I also travel to a local mussel farmer whose prices are half what the stores charge (when we lived out East we also found local fisherfolk with similar price breaks). Finally, I shop the fish sales – sole and cod are often $4.99 here, as is salmon, mahi mahi is 6.99 on sale – plus I agree Trader Joe’s is a great resource.

  5. Love to see more fish recipes. Our family harvests up to 50 sockeye salmon each summer for our personal use so it is a staple for us. Buying seafood here is cost prohibitive even though it is abundant.

  6. Heather M says:

    We LOVE fish, etc, in our house. We eat it at least once a week, not including tuna sandwiches or tuna w/crackers (or for me, tuna w/cottage cheese, in salads, etc). We’ll eat it many ways, but one way that’s fast for a weeknight with little time is salmon or mahi mahi topped with Montreal Steak Seasoning and cooked in the grill pan. We eat a variety of fish in many different ways, including salmon, mahi mahi, tilapia, cod, halibut(only pacific, the atlantic is not good-totally different taste), and others. We all LOVE shrimp and eat it many ways as well, from cooked simply w/garlic, in various asian noodle dishes, tossed in a jambalaya or my phony paella, etc, etc. My kids could eat shrimp straight and be happy. Clam chowder is popular here, as are other fish stews. We love love love fish, sushi, everything. All of us.

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