Crappie in Foil

Each month I highlight an ingredient in my recipe. This month that ingredient isn’t edible but a major contributor to your success when grilling tasty crappie fillets.

History of Foil
We take it for granted now but aluminum foil hasn’t been around all that long. First there was tin foil, and many of us still call aluminum foil “tin” foil much like we call aluminum cans “tin” cans.
Tin foil was marketed commercially from the late 1800s into the early 20th century. Aluminum was first used to replace tin in 1910, when the first aluminum foil rolling plant began operating in Switzerland. The first use of aluminum foil in the United States was in 1913 for wrapping Life Savers, candy bars and gum. By the mid 20th century aluminum foil was commonplace.
Tin foil, less malleable than aluminum foil, tended to give a slight metallic taste to food wrapped in it. Yuck!
Aluminum foil is commonly used for barbecuing more delicate foods, such as mushrooms, vegetables and fish; food is wrapped in foil prevents the loss of moisture when placed on the grill. While we aren’t barbecuing crappies, the foil is essential for our recipe, keeping all the good tastes in place.
So pull off a couple of strips of foil and let’s cook some crappie fillets.

Crappie Fillets
2 pounds crappie fillets
3 teaspoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon dill
Salt and pepper

Rub fillets with butter and place on aluminum foil with the edges turned up. Sprinkle lemon juice, basil, dill salt and pepper on fillets. Fold foil over fillets and tightly seal edges. Grill or bake for approximately 15 minutes or until fillets are white and flaky.
I save the juices from the foil to use like gravy. Umm, most tasty!

Southern Beans and Rice
1 1/4 pounds dried pinto beans
7 cups water bottle
1 small ham hock
1 chopped medium onion
2 minced cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 thickly sliced pound ring smoked beef and pork sausage
10-ounce undrained can tomatoes with green chilies
1/2 cup uncooked regular rice
Sort and wash beans. Combine beans, water, ham hock, onion, garlic, and salt in a large Dutch oven. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and cook 45 minutes. Add sausage, tomatoes with green chilies, and rice. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Remove ham hock, shred ham from bone with a fork, and return ham to bean mixture. Makes 6 servings.