Mustard-Thyme Crusted Tilapia w/ a side of Back Spasm

I had planned to fry the tilapia, but at the last minute I decided to go in a different direction. I briefly marinated the tilapia with rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, olive oil, lime juice, salt, pepper, garlic powder, thyme, & lime zest. I added a heaping spoonful of my favorite mustard - a roasted garlic champagne mustard I got at a specialty spice shop in Tampa. Let it sit for 10 minutes at room temperature, while I chopped veggies and heated the pan. I fried half of the fish and just seared the rest. For the frying, I coated each filet with mustard flour, AP flour, salt, & pepper. The seared filets I just dosed with kosher salt. Approx 4 minutes on med-high heat for each side, then on a plate to rest.

In the same pan, I sauteed a Vidalia onion (with more salt, of course.) I had to add a little olive oil because I hadn’t used much for the fish. Once the onion began to carmelize, I added some frozen peas, stirred, and covered to steam. While that cooked, I took the leftover marinade and whisked in a little flour. (Honestly, I used the breading mixture that was left from frying the fish.) Once the peas were fully cooked, I put all the veggies in a bowl off to the side and let the pan come back up to temperature. Here’s where I cheated and brought out the roasted garlic mashed potatoes from last week. I folded in some diced green onions. Since the pan was nice & hot, I added some olive oil & a little salt and slapped down the mashed potatoes. I let 'em sit untouched for about 4 minutes, then stirred 'em in an attempt to brown the other half. They had nice crusty bits. It wasn’t the right consistency to make a potato pancake, but I did get a good sear.

Once the mashed potatoes were reheated, I emptied the pan again and threw in the flour/marinade mix. Let it bubble for a bit so it’d thicken into a light pan sauce, added back the onions & peas, stirred to coat, and voila!

30 minutes later, when I was carrying my plate back into the kitchen, my back spasmed and sent me to the floor. Thus it was a night of culinary accomplishment followed by a little crawling to get myself into bed. Sadly, I’m enough of an internet addict that I crawled out of bed an hour later to write this post and check my e-mail. I think I need a 12-step program.

Edit: I just sneezed, and I’d swear that little blast of pain blew out a few neurons. Ouch.