Fancy Fish in the Air Fryer
Recipe by Michele Vieux
Y’all…maybe you already discovered this but it recently occurred to me that you can better broil some things in your air fryer if you use the drip pan as the cooking tray instead of the slotted cooking trays that are suggested. “Why would you want to do this,” you might ask? One word. Sauce.
My first experiment with this method involved a fresh, skinless snapper filet but you could use any kind of white fleshed fish you love. Shrimp or scallops would work great for this recipe too. Sure, you can cook other fish using this recipe but I’d recommend saving the salmon or tuna for another day’s dish as the meal has some pretty strong flavors on it’s own and you don’t need them battling for top tasting position with the fishier and stronger tasting fishes.
There are a couple of great things about this meal. One is that it is technically a “one dish wonder” because everything is cooked together on the same tray so that’s the only clean-up you have besides your plate. Unless you just eat it right off the tray like I would have done if I didn’t want to snap this photo for you.
The second great thing about this meal that makes me excited to cook it, even for a weekday lunch like I did this time, is that it only takes 3 minutes to prep and 7 minutes to cook. So you have a delicious, hot and fancy fish meal in 10 minutes! So yes, you can have it on a weekday/workday for lunch at home.
Here’s how to enjoy my fancy fish (or whatever version you come up with based on this recipe). Remember the rules, especially #1:
What does “don’t be rigid” mean? It means that you shouldn’t get stuck on following the recipe exactly. This isn’t baking so you don’t need to! Omit what you don’t have or don’t like. Add something you do instead! This recipe is just an example and suggestion of what can be done. So use your creativity and whatever you have in your kitchen. Don’t stress about buying 57 new ingredients in this week’s shopping trip.
And just some quick notes on #’s 2 & 3 while we are covering the rules.
#2: Do not – I repeat – DO NOT take this to work with you and reheat it in the microwave.
#3: This is a common issue that novice cooks have and doing so causes your food to be less flavorful. Brown = good. Sticking to the pan = good. Embrace those flavor-makers! Stop stirring so much! Luckily for you, I’ve taken away all this temptation in this recipe and there is no stirring involved. None. Don’t do it.
Air Fryer Fish Recipe
(For one serving)
– 1 filet of white fish (Your choice! I used snapper.)
– 1 medium to large tomato, cut into large dice
– 10 Kalamata olives (This is the only thing that needs to be exact. Just kidding. Use however many you want. Or use green ones. Or even sub capers!)
– 1/2-1 ounce feta cheese
– 1/4 cup olive oil
– Sprinkle of Garlic (Fresh minced or powder. I used powder here as a time saver.)
– Pinch of Dried Oregano
– Salt & Pepper to taste
* Steamed Spinach (To serve it on – I just steamed mine in a bag in the microwave. Takes 60 seconds)
Cut the fish into smaller portions so they cook faster and more evenly. Place them on the drip pan so they aren’t touching each other. Pour in the olive oil and rub the fish around in it so it is coated on all sides. There will be a little layer in the bottom of the pan which is what we want for this dish and the sauce creation! In the gaps around the fish (try to leave some of the flesh uncovered), add the tomatoes, olives, and garlic (if you are using fresh minced.) Sprinkle on the feta, oregano, salt, pepper & garlic (if you are using powder). Put into the air fryer and set on “broil”.
I didn’t even bother to preheat it for this recipe. Cook for 7-8 minutes or until the tops of the tomatoes and feta start to brown. Meanwhile, steam your spinach and wash your cutting board! In no time at all, you will have your finished tray!
I served mine over a bed of steamed spinach but you could do pasta, rice, or another veggie of your choosing. Use as much or as little of the olive oil as you like! And if you want it to be “saucier” then chop up your tomatoes finer and/or crush them with your hands as you sprinkle them onto the tray before you cook the dish.