Fancy Fish Campfire Dinner

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Every now and then when we were little – probably in desperation – my mother would let us make aluminum foil “campfire” dinners. That meant that we put together what we wanted to eat so no one could complain if they didn’t like it. It also meant no massive after dinner clean-up, plus we thought it was so fabulously entertaining (there were no X Boxes and only 3 TV stations). In those days the protein of choice was usually ground beef or maybe chicken and the vegetables ranged from potatoes and onions to carrots and corn. Everything went in one piece of foil and was sealed and baked. For Girl Scout camping trips, the foil packs could be put in the campfire - guaranteeing that it was either halfway done or burned to a charcoal crisp.

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This summer we’ve been enjoying an upscale version of a “campfire” dinner that my guys really love. Ours is not only delicious but it’s probably also pretty healthy. We use aluminum foil in a pan so the clean-up is minimal. The vegetable base is made of up sliced tomatoes and garlic with a few slivers of basil and a grown-up addition of a splash of wine (veggie or chicken broth would be fine). That bakes for 10 minutes then it’s topped it with Mahi Mahi (any white fish you like will work) brushed with olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper plus a little lime or lemon zest. The foil isn’t sealed, but the fish stays nice and moist after 10 to 12 minutes in a hot oven. An optional broil for just a minute browns the top of the fish. Sprinkle with more basil and serve in the foil. For a really easy side dish add asparagus to the foil for the last 6 minutes of baking. There you have it -- dinner is done. It doesn’t get much easier. Enjoy!

Baked Mahi Mahi with Tomatoes and Garlic

Ingredients (Recipe for 2 – easy to double or triple or more according to guests and math skills.)

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4-6 Roma tomatoes, sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces (or 1/2 tsp dried)

½ cup white wine (or broth)

2 Mahi Mahi filets

1 tsp olive oil

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Salt, pepper, paprika

Optional: lime or lemon zest


Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Line 2 small 8x8 baking dishes (or similar size) with foil and spray with cooking spray (or brush with olive oil).

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Divide tomato slices between pans placing in a single layer, top with chopped garlic and basil and sprinkle salt and pepper.

Add about ¼ c wine to each pan.

Bake for 10 to 15 minutes until tomatoes soften and begin to brown.

Top with Mahi Mahi filets brushed with olive oil and sprinkled with salt, pepper and paprika.

Top fish with lemon or lime zest if desired.

Bake for another 10 to 12 minutes until fish is flakey.

Broil for one minute to brown.

Serve in foil topped with additional basil if desired. 

© Deer One Publishing 2019