Cooking up delicious walleye

OBSERVER Photo by Forrest Fisher Delicious, no smell, fish fillet dinners are made easy with simple oven recipe.

The fish are biting!

If you fish and consume your harvest, you already know that the high-protein filets are so tasty. Lake Erie is red-hot with tightly-packed schools of walleye between Dunkirk and Barcelona. Now is a perfect time to share walleye recipes among readers and catchers.

First, an easy-bake fish dinner classic from my better half. Fern says, “The ingredients are simple; just check your kitchen before you start. You’ll need a tablespoon or two of olive oil, a tablespoon or two of Hellman’s real mayonnaise, one pound of any ¢ -1” thick fillet fish (walleye), one sweet white onion, ¢ tsp each of ground thyme, garlic powder, paprika, cayenne pepper and salt, ™ cup bread crumbs, a pinch of black pepper, a fresh orange, lime or lemon (your choice), some aluminum foil, and a working oven or grill to provide a heat source. I like 375F degrees for my oven temp.”

Choose a Pyrex plate or a baking dish large enough to hold the fillets, then lightly spray the bottom with olive oil or Pam. Place the fish fillet on the baking dish (skin side down if it has skin), then spread a thin coating of Hellman’s mayo to cover the top of the fillet. In a cup or small bowl, dry mix the ground thyme, garlic powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, black pepper and salt with the bread crumbs, and lightly sprinkle this mix over the fillet. Then slice a sweet onion thin, and place one or two thin slices across each fish on top of the mayo. Preheat the oven to 375F (or use a grill). Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and cook for 30-35 minutes or until the fish fillet turns flaky white. The FDA recommends cooking fish to a minimum internal temp of 145F, but the aluminum foil cover keeps the fish’s moisture intact even when the temp is above that.

With freshwater fish, I want to be sure they are cooked. Doing things this way, the fillets just fall apart. Delicious. Remove from the oven, use a spatula to remove for serving to individual plates. At your option, squeeze the juice of an orange, lime or lemon, your personal preference, over the fillet portion on your plate. Add hot sauce on the side if you like. We enjoy this healthy and delicious dinner meal with a garden salad and a small portion of carbohydrates such as cooked noodles, brown rice, or a sliced red potato. This recipe is so good that you may want to cook more quickly!

This is the time of the year when many of us prepare to check tree stands for hunting. The New York State archery season is not far away. It’s also the time to be especially aware of deer ticks, the local source of deadly Lyme disease. AWARENESS is necessary. Be careful in the summer woods to protect yourself and your family from these tiny invasive deer ticks. One out of every two of these nearly invisible deer ticks (Ixodes Scapularis) can carry the nasty Lyme disease. Lyme can mimic about 400 other medical conditions, making it hard to identify correctly. We’ll cover more on Lyme disease in a three-part series coming up in September. For now, know that it is a simple process to protect yourself and those around you with deer tick protection. One of the easiest methods is to use a specially prepared commercial spray can product.

The day before your outing, spray your outer garments and boots with Permethrin (Sawyer Products). Permethrin works for a hiker, camper or angler, as well. Sawyer says that the protection is good for five weeks or six washings. Deer ticks are so tiny; they are nearly microscopic and hard to see. Most people bring them indoors with a pet, usually a dog or cat. The most disturbing part of the deer tick story is that most folks never even know they are bit, as the bite is painless. Birds and chipmunks, rabbits, squirrels, horses, and other outdoor critters can carry them, so stay protected. On any exposed skin, the use of Picaridin spray works well, as I have used this for many years now. Permethrin on your clothes and shoes (let dry) and Picaridin on your exposed skin. Picaridin and Permethrin cost about $10-$12 each at your local outdoor store or at Walmart. I use about six of these each year. Visit https://www.sawyer.com/products/picaridin-insect-repellen.

If your deer-tick protection preference is to go chemical-free, look into purchasing a suit of Rynoskin (www.rynoskin.com) or visit Amazon, where you’ll find free shipping. The nylon stocking-like Rynoskin includes socks, bottoms, tops, a hoodie, and gloves. The bottoms and tops are worn under your clothes and over your underwear. The piece overlap, and this eliminates an interface seam that ticks will penetrate on ordinary clothing. The gloves and hoodie go on last. The deer ticks can’t get through Rynoskin, nor can no-see-ums and mosquitoes. The total cost for a Rynoskin suit is about $150. Rynoskin does not always protect from wasps, bees or hornets, as their stinger-poker is strong enough to work through the suit. Rynoskin is breathable and offers no insulation value, so it works in summer, too. I wear a Rynoskin suit when hiking in warm weather or sitting in the stand for hours and days.

To learn more about deer ticks and Lyme disease as a responsible outdoor adventurer and responsible parent or pet owner:

1. Visit https://lymediseaseassociation.org/.

2. Remember that only a qualified healthcare professional can diagnose and prescribe appropriate treatment for Lyme disease.

3. If you suspect you have been exposed to ticks or are experiencing symptoms associated with Lyme disease, seek medical attention promptly.

Additionally, to prevent Lyme disease, taking preventive measures, such as wearing protective clothing, using tick repellents, and checking for ticks after spending time in areas where ticks may be present, is crucial.


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