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Great Lakes Whitefish for Lent: Delicious and Nutritious

March 12, 2010

Ma Baensch shares a savory and satisfying recipe for the Easter season


Lent is underway and that means fish-only Fridays for observing Christians. The traditional Friday-night fish fry served by many local restaurants and pubs is a popular choice among the faithful, but eating fried fish may not be for everyone, every Friday.


Fried cod or perch is commonly served by Wisconsin establishments, but for those who may be looking
for an easy, healthier alternative, fresh Great Lakes whitefish could be the recipe for success. Packed with protein and essential nutrients, including Omega-3 fatty acids, whitefish is good for the heart and the brain. And tasty too!


The Great Lakes basin is home to the whitefish, which was prized by Native Americans and early
explorers for its distinctive non-fishy flavor. Today, whitefish is a popular catch among many fisheries right here in Wisconsin and a favorite fish among Wisconsinites. Not only is whitefish flavorful, healthy and local, it is caught using environmentally friendly practices.


“Whitefish is a Wisconsin favorite because of its sweet, mild flavor. In addition to being served as a dinner entrée, it is perfect for chowders, sandwiches and salads. Whitefish can also be cooked in a variety of ways, but the trick is to not overcook it,” said Kim Wall, seafood expert and president of Baensch Food Products, the Milwaukee-based company that makes the popular Ma Baensch herring brand. “One of my favorite, easy whitefish recipes calls for brown sugar and fresh lemons. Preparing this dish is a healthy way to observe the Lenten season and support our local fisheries.”




Baked Great Lakes Whitefish
Makes 2 servings
2 fresh whitefish fillets (6 to 8 ounces each), skin on with pin
bones removed
2 lemons, one thinly sliced and one cut into wedges
1 T butter
Sea salt and pepper or other type of seasoning salt, to taste
2 t brown sugar
Cooking oil spray


Preheat oven to 350° F. Lightly spray a glass oven-proof baking dish, large enough for fillets to be placed in a single layer. Place fillets in baking dish, skin side down. Lightly season fillets and
sprinkle with brown sugar. Lightly rub seasonings into fillets. Top fillets sparingly with thin slices of butter and place a layer of fresh lemon slices on top. Bake, uncovered, 8 to 10 minutes, maybe
longer depending on the thickness of the fillets, until fish is opaque and flakes easily. Take care not to overcook as fillets will become tough.


Serve immediately with additional fresh lemon wedges on the side.