Sole stuffed with herbs & garlic, baked with beans & tomatoes

Cooking, Fish, Food, Healthy, Herbs, Recipes No Comments

Sole is pretty boring, generally, so I decided to jazz it up a bit. The ingredients list makes this look way more complicated than it is. Takes about 15-20 mins to prepare, and 25 mins to bake. I also totally failed to take a picture of this, but will next time.


  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp parsley, minced
  • 2 tbsp chives, minced
  • 2 tbsp tarragon, minced
  • 1 tbsp thyme leaves
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 4 filets of sole, no skin
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 med shallot, minced
  • 1 tin white kidney beans, well rinsed and drained
  • 1 tin diced tomatoes (low sodium)
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • Salt & pepper


  1. Heat oven to 325.
  2. Mix the parsley, chives, tarragon, lemon zest, and half of the garlic together in a small bowl.
  3. Heat a saute pan over med heat and heat the olive oil. Toss in the shallot, thyme, and the rest of the garlic & saute for a minute or two.
  4. Add the beans to the pan and continue sauteing for 3-4 mins. Add the tomatoes and heat until simmering. Stir in the lemon juice, and some salt and pepper to taste. These should simmer for 8-10 mins or so while you’re preparing the fish bundles.
  5. While the beans and tomatoes are simmering, lay filets out on a cutting board, skinned side up. Spread the dijon over each in a thin layer (this should use up all the mustard). Sprinkle the herb/zest mixture over the filets. Drizzle the garlic butter over the filets, including all the garlic. Roll the filets up into bundles, starting at the tail end, and secure with 2-3 toothpicks each.
  6. Pour the tomatoes and beans into a glass* 8″ x 8″ baking dish. They should be in an even layer and slightly soupy.
  7. Nestle the 4 sole bundles into the tomatoes and spoon tomatoes and beans over each so the fish won’t get dried out. Grate fresh pepper over it all and bake for 20-25 mins.

Fish is cooked through when it’s 130-140 on an instant read thermometer, or opaque all the way through. Serve in pasta bowls, removing the toothpicks, with plenty of the tomato & bean mixture.

* glass is vital for baking anything with tomatoes in it — a metal pan or dish will just taste weird and tinny and don’t do it. Don’t be like me.


Food, Gardening, Herbs, House, Moncton 2 Comments

first sprouts

I’ve always wanted to have my own herb garden, and now that we have a house with a big yard and plenty of sun, it’s time. At the beginning of March I started doing some research and very quickly discovered that buying herb plants, particularly the number and variety I want, was simply untenable. At a minimum of $3 per plant (plus shipping, and shipping plants isn’t cheap) I was looking at a final bill of a couple hundred bucks, the majority of which was for annuals. Since half the idea is to save money by not buying fresh herbs at the grocery store (seriously, $2-3 for a small handful of wilted basil?), a couple of hundred bucks wasn’t in the cards.

Then I spotted the seed prices, which are much more in line with what I had budgeted for this little experiment. While there are a few herbs that can’t really be grown from seed, the vast majority can, and ordering from Richter’s, I got many more herb, tomato, vegetable, and decorative plant seeds that I really need for less than $50. Another $12 got seeding flats and soil, and I was all set.

Last Saturday I spent a couple of hours planting out two flats’ worth of seeds — 144 units in all, with 2-3 seeds in each. These included: Sweet Basil, Thai Basil, Lemon Balm, Chives, Cilantro (two types), Dill, Greek Oregano, Italian Parsley, Rosemary, Garden Sage, French Thyme, Yellow Currant Tomatoes, Roma Tomatoes, Alpine Strawberries, Chinese Lantern, and four types of chiles (Cayenne, Jalapeno, Scotch Bonnet, and Serrano). I planted 144 in total because I’m pessimistically expecting a 75% failure rate, but we’ll see how it goes. There are still some herbs I need to buy as plants, including Bay, a couple of Mints, and French Tarragon. I expect I’ll also need to pick up a few Rosemary plants since those are apparently difficult to grow from seed.

Today, six days after planting the seeds, I was excited to discover the first sproutlings. The Sweet Basil, Thyme, Chives, and Oregano have all germinated, in spite of the less-than-stellar conditions they’ve had to deal with. Of course, I really have no idea what I’m doing beyond what I’ve read on a handful of pages on the internet, so we’ll see how it all turns out in the end.

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