Usually, the saying starts off with “When life gives you lemons…” but my supper inspiration actually starts off “When your neighbor’s dog craps in your yard…”
As much as I’d love a fenced, private back yard, looking out and seeing the empty lot behind us makes our yard seem that much larger. Plus, it’s Vinny’s Frisbee course – so fencing is out of the question.
Without a fence, the neighborhood dogs (two large black labs and two small fat corgis to be specific) regularly come over to mark their territory over Vinny’s extensive marking. Now that I’m trying my darnedest at gardening, I’m outside more and privy to witnessing the leg-lifting party that goes on when their owners aren’t looking.
But this day, the owner was outside. And his dog crapped in my yard.
So to apologize he gave me a bag of fresh-caught fish from the good’ole Missouri River. So what did I do? Turned a “crappy” situation into grilled crappies over lemon noodles.
*pause for laughter*
I’ll be here all week, folks.
In all seriousness, I’m not the biggest fan of lemon. Limes, yes. Lemons, not so much. But I had two at the end of their life in my fridge, and a bunch of parsley starting to wilt. Plus summertime calls for a bright, sunny interpretation for this fish.
I laid the fish out on paper towels to dry off while I boiled noodles to al dente and drained them. In the meantime, I heated butter (the REAL stuff, people) in a cast iron skillet with minced garlic and fresh spinach. After it cooked down for a few minutes, I tossed the pasta into the skillet and added the lemon and chopped parsley.
The fish I arranged over lemon slices in a grill basket, and topped it with tin foil. I wanted to pseudo-steam, and the lemon helped so the fish didn’t fall through the grate, while imparting their flavor during the grilling process. Hubby took it from here and manned his station at the grill.
One last toss of the noodles with some freshly-grated Parmesan and black pepper and it was ready to go!
I loved this dish even more because of the challenge of using up the forgotten ingredients in my fridge. I equally loved that the fish traveled no more than 15 miles from its watery home to my plate. Oh and I didn’t have to clean it 😉