Of course, bacon should not be consumed every single day, but I think it is fine to enjoy it once in a while. After all, there is nothing that comes quite close to mimicking the smoky, meaty, salty taste of bacon. It complements and contrasts nicely with so many different flavors.
Some things to remember though, are to try to purchase the most natural bacon that you can find, which means that it is free of antibiotics and hormones. If possible, refrain from buying bacon that came from the factory farming system (these include bacon from major companies such as Oscar Meyer, Tyson, Smithfield, etc.), as these include residues of toxins such as antibiotics and pesticides. (Read more here) Supermarkets such as Whole Foods and Wegman's sell delicious, organic bacon, so try to look at those places.
This dish is versatile in that you can use any type of white fish, including cod, whiting, pollock, haddock, and many others, depending on your preference for texture and taste. White fish is a valuable ingredient, because it is such a wonderful carrier of robust flavors. The richness of the bacon and the rosemary are nicely balanced by the lightness of the fish and the lemon.
white fish: low in fat but high in protein; rich in vitamin B (increase metabolism; healthy skin and immune system); great source of selenium (healthy skin and cells) and iodine (thyroid functioning)
asparagus: excellent source of folate (helps form red blood cells; essential for proper cell division); rich in fat-soluble vitamin K (strong bones, healthy blood clotting); contains antioxidants (beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin- protects cells against oxidative damage caused by free radicals); rich in vitamin B (regulates blood sugar levels)
2 7oz white fish filets
leaves from 1 sprig of rosemary, finely chopped
zest and juice from 1 lemon
freshly ground black pepper
6 slices bacon (3 per fillet)
2 Tablespoons mayonnaise
1 large bunch of asparagus
prep time: 10 min
cook time: 15-20 min
adapted from Cook with Jamie Oliver
1. Preheat oven to 400F.
2. Finely chop the rosemary leaves, and zest the lemon.
3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (about an inch of water from the bottom of the pot), and trim the tough ends of the asparagus spears.
4. Place the spears in the pot, and cook the spears until just tender. It will be around 2 minutes for skinny spears and 4 minutes for thick ones. Remove from pot and set aside.
5. Season the fish fillets with the rosemary, lemon zest, and black pepper. No salt is needed, because you have the bacon for that!
6. If you wish for a thinner, crispier bacon, pound the bacon slices to slightly thin them out. Lay out the bacon slices next to each other, slightly overlapping. Place the fish fillet on top, and wrap the bacon around it.
7. Heat a skillet on medium-high heat with olive oil, and add the fish. Fry for 1-2 minutes, and then transfer the fish to a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Bake for 10-12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish. If your bacon is on the thicker side, the edges of the bacon will be crispy, but the middle still soft. If you used thinner bacon slices, then the bacon will be crisp and golden.
8. While the fish is cooking, in a small bowl, mix the mayonnaise, the juice from 1/2 lemon, and freshly ground black pepper until well blended. The mayonnaise should be slightly too tangy.
9. Remove the fish from the baking sheet, transfer to a serving plate, and place a pile of asparagus drizzled with the lemon mayonnaise next to the fish.