Carrabba's Italian Grill was founded by Johnny Carrabba and Damian Mandola in Houston, Texas in 1986. The restaurant features hand-prepared family recipes made from the finest ingredients and prepared to order in an exhibition kitchen. The success of Carrabba's led to the popular PBS cooking show Cucina!, starring Carrabba and Mandola, as well as a series of companion cookbooks. There are currently 240 Carrabba's Italian Grill locations around the country.

Offering Italian-inspired cuisine passed down from our founders’ family recipes, Carrabba’s uses only the best ingredients to prepare fresh and handmade dishes cooked to order in a lively exhibition kitchen. Featuring a wood-burning grill inspired by the many tastes of Italy, customers can enjoy signature dishes, including Chicken Bryan, Spiedino di Mare and a fresh twist on an Italian Classic, Wood-grilled Chicken Marsala. Carrabba’s was voted #1 Italian in the 2014 Consumer Picks Survey by Nation’s Restaurant News.



Tilapia Nocciola

Carrabba's Copycat Recipe

Serves 6

Lemon Butter Sauce
2 garlic gloves, minced
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons Sherry
1 tablespoon chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
salt and pepper

6 tilapia fillets
1 cup hazelnuts, coarsely ground
3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
3 eggs
canola oil
salt and pepper
grape tomatoes for garnish (optional)

Lemon Butter Sauce:  In a medium saucepan over medium low heat, add butter and garlic. Saute until garlic softens. Add lemon juice, sherry, and chicken stock. Reduce by half, about 4-5 minutes. Whisk in cream and lemon zest and reduce to thicken slightly, about 3 minutes. Take the mixture off of the heat and add the basil, whisk to combine.

Tilapia:  Add 2 tablespoons of oil to a large pan and heat over medium-high heat. Place two shallow dishes by the stove, closest to the burner you’re going to sear the tilapia in. Add ground hazelnuts and panko to one of the dishes and the eggs to the other dish. Add a 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt and a pinch of pepper to each dish and whisk. Dip tilapia fillets into the egg mixture, turning to coat, then directly into the hazelnut mixture, making sure to thoroughly coat each side. Place the first 3 fillets into the hot pan and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, adding a sprinkle of salt to the fillets after you flip them. Repeat with the next three fillets.

To Serve: Drizzle the tilapia with lemon butter sauce and garnish with fresh grape tomatoes.


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