Catfish With Fennel And Tomatoes For One


This Catfish with Fennel and Tomatoes For One is packed with flavor!  A quick, easy and healthy recipe for one!

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This Catfish with Fennel and Tomatoes is packed with flavor! A quick, easy and healthy single serving meal. | ZagLeft

Growing up in Louisiana, seafood was often on our dinner table.  Being so close to the Gulf meant we were always able to get fresh seafood pretty much all the time.  Shrimp, oysters and fish were commonly on our menu and my mom was always creative in the ways she prepared them.

Of all seafood, catfish has probably always been one of my favorite types of fish.  Maybe it’s because I have fond memories of enjoying deliciously messy catfish po-boys in New Orleans or maybe it’s because my mother often served my favorite meal of fried catfish nuggets with a thick cornmeal batter for dinner.  Either way, catfish has always been one of my favorites.

I’ve been looking for ways to lighten up my menus lately.  I have a big birthday coming up and I don’t want to enter into that new chapter with any excess baggage, shall we say.

For the past several weeks, I’ve been working hard to restore a bit of balance to my life.  I have been working long hours on the blog and trying to effectively juggle family/life responsibilities.  I’ve pushed exercise on the back burner, snacked instead of taking the time to prepare nutritious lunches and I’ve been getting to bed way too late.

On the blog side, all the hard work is really paying off.  I’m so excited about the new changes coming this way.  I’m hoping that in about two weeks (fingers crossed) ZagLeft will have a completely new look.  The site will be easier to navigate and filled with so many new features.  I’m beyond thrilled and can’t wait to share it with you!


On the personal side, I’ve got this big birthday is coming up.  It’s not until November but it’s a milestone one and I’m already thinking about it.

Getting older has never bothered me…ever…until recently.

At every age, I have always felt proud of the year behind me and this year is no different.

I breezed through my twenties feeling like a brand new adult.  I got married, had kids, bought a house.  Life was busy and fun.

My thirties were awkward to say the least.  I wasn’t very comfortable in my own skin and I questioned my decisions way too much.

When I turned forty, I think I finally felt like a grown up.  I felt like I had finally grown into myself and I love that feeling.

I actually really do love being in my forties.  I’ve finally figured out who I am.  But this upcoming birthday will begin a new chapter and it’s funny how I’m being so affected by it.

Going forward, I’m really trying to find balance in everything.  Making that commitment has been easy and I’m surprisingly confident I can continue to do it.

Balance for me also means adding more light and healthy recipes to our rotating dinner menus.  Easy recipes like this Catfish with Fennel and Tomatoes make me feel less guilty about eating so many of the sweets I love.

This Catfish with Fennel and Tomatoes is packed with flavor! A quick, easy and healthy single serving meal. | ZagLeft

I love the addition of fennel to this dish.  Fennel tastes a little like licorice and when it’s cooked, it tastes a little sweet.  I absolutely love the flavor here especially when mixed with red peppers, tomatoes and garlic.  It’s a mild flavor and is perfect with the catfish.

This one-dish meal is so easy to prepare.  I bake the vegetables in the baking dish for about 20 minutes.  After the vegetables cook, I add a little white wine to the pan and top it with the catfish.  Everything bakes in the oven for about 20 minutes longer.

While the fish bakes, I bake – yes, bake a single serving of rice in the oven.

 Single Serving Baked Rice | ZagLeft

Baking rice in the oven is so easy to do.  While the fish cooks, so does the rice.  An excellent single serving meal made in minutes.

This Catfish with Fennel and Tomatoes is packed with flavor! A quick, easy and healthy single serving meal. | ZagLeft

Oprah used to say, “live your best life at any age” and that’s exactly what I’m trying to do. She goes on to say, “If you’re blessed to grow older, there’s so much wisdom to be gained from celebrating the process with vibrancy and vigor and grace”  That, my friends will be my new motto this year.


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Dishes used in this recipe…

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Catfish With Fennel And Tomatoes For One
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
40 mins
Total Time
50 mins

This Catfish with Fennel and Tomatoes For One is packed with flavor! A quick, easy and healthy single serving meal.

Course: Main Dish
Servings: 1 serving
Author: Joanie Zisk
  • 1 bulb fennel
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 red pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1/2 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 in plum tomatoes, sliced half lengthwise
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons white wine
  • 1 catfish fillet
  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon butter
  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Wash the fennel bulb under cool running water. Pat dry with paper towel.
  3. Cut bulb in half lengthwise. Cut away and discard center core from each half. Thinly slice remainder of fennel bulb.
  4. In a baking dish, toss 1 tablespoon olive oil, fennel slices, red pepper slices, onion slices, tomatoes, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper. Mix together well.
  5. Bake 20 minutes.
  6. Remove pan from the oven and stir in the wine.
  7. Place the catfish fillet over the vegetables, sprinkle with an additional pinch of salt and pepper and 1 tablespoon olive oil.
  8. Bake 20 minutes more, until catfish is cooked through.
  10. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  11. Place all of the ingredients in a baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 40 minutes.

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  1. What a great post! I love how you defined yourself in each decade and the quote from Oprah “live your best life at any age” it is something I needed to hear today. I also do enjoy your dish, it looks great!

  2. Ah, the milestone birthdays. I’ve got one of those coming up in about 6 months, too! Well, if these milestones can inspire beautiful recipes like this one, bring it! 🙂 I love fennel and it looks like a great addition to this fish dish! Nice!

  3. I love the whole premise of your blog- cooking single serve items! How simple yet so many people have a hard time scaling a recipe.
    And this fish looks divine! Thanks for the recipe! 🙂


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