Lent is here and though you might choose something to refrain from, you won’t have to give up taste, quality, variety or value if you shop at Strack & Van Til.

The Strack & Van Til Seafood and Deli Departments have the best fish and seafood catch, as well as other options for meatless Fridays — and they’re all quick and easy to serve.

Save time and make your life easier with Lenten Meals Made Easy, including the Friday Night Fish Fry in the Seafood Department. Catch this special every week during Lent and choose from the Fantail Shrimp Dinner, Tilapia and Shrimp Dinner, or Swai and Shrimp Dinner. Each comes with a half pound of seafood, a half pound of fries and quarter pound of delicious cole slaw—all for $5.99 per dinner.

Other varieties are catfish, ocean perch, orange roughy, tilapia, lake perch and more. Starting at $6.99, you’ll get a half pound  of seafood, a half pound of fries and a quarter pound of coleslaw.

“Many of our customers say our selection is the best in Northwest Indiana,” says Strack Van Til Meat and Seafood Department Director Gary Teachman. “And that’s no fish story.”

Crunchy hushpuppies, savory breaded green beans, gooey mozzarella sticks and tasty sweet potato fries are perfect as appetizers or sides and are also available for purchase.

If you want to skip the hassle or mess of frying your fish at home, let the Seafood Department do all the work. “We’re happy to prepare your meal the way you like it,” notes Teachman. “Choose your favorite fresh fish, and we’ll fry it for you for an additional charge of just $1 per pound. You can even choose from three types of breading.”

For a simple dinner, pop a Steamable Bag in the microwave for 4 to 6 minutes and you’ve got deliciousness that’s ready to eat. Steamable options include seasoned salmon or seasoned tilapia with vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower and carrots) and seasoned shrimp with vegetable or rice.

Searching for other speedy meals? Choose freshly made omega 3-packed salmon burgers in zesty dill, Cajun, spinach feta and garlic parmesan varieties.

Visit the Strack &Van Til Deli Department for more Lenten options. Reel in hot and ready Panko-breaded pollack patty fish sandwiches topped with American cheese and served on a steamed bun. Want to make it a meal? Just add two small sides and it’s just $6.

Freshly tossed salads with a variety of greens such as spinach, kale and traditional romaine and iceberg lettuce are a healthy, meatless alternative. Enjoy coleslaws, pasta salads and tuna, egg or seafood salads, including the deli’s special Bang Bang Shrimp and pasta salad. This customer favorite includes tender shrimp, sweet “krab” meat, crisp celery, water chestnuts and seashell pasta dressed in creamy, sweet chili garlic aioli and a splash of lime.

“You’ll love our meatless soups. Flavorful, filling and satisfying, they’re delicious on their own or as an addition to your Lenten meal,” says Deli Director Kristin Snow. “Choose from comforting favorites like chunky clam chowder, rich lobster bisque, creamy tomato and heavenly broccoli cheddar.”

Ready-made seafood, tuna or egg salad spread on bread or a flaky croissant and ready-to-use hard-boiled egg six-packs make the perfect Lenten staples. Macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, potato wedges and other easy heat-and-serve items are all available in the Deli Department.

Fishing for complements to your Lenten meal? Try the Deli Department’s two new pasta salads. The Creamy Broccoli Rotini Pasta Salad Kit includes tender pasta, fresh vegetables and a sweet creamy dressing while the Rotini Vegetable Salad Kit features tri-colored rotini pasta in a zesty Italian-style dressing with fresh vegetables and ripe olives.

Cheese lovers have multiple choices for Lent in the Strack & Van Til Deli Department. Try the deli’s cheese pizzas and cheesy garlic Giacobbino’s Flatbreads or toss a Caprese salad with fresh mozzarella that’s also delicious on tomato bread. Chihuahua cheese creates the perfect quesadilla and specialty cheeses are ideal for building a gourmet three-cheese grilled cheese sandwich, as in the recipe below:


Grilled Three-Cheese Sandwiches

(Taste of the South Magazine)

Yields: 4


¼ cup mayonnaise

8 slices white sandwich bread

4 slices yellow American cheese

4 slices Colby-Jack cheese

4 slices cream Havarti cheese

4 Tbsp. salted butter, divided



Spread mayonnaise on half of the bread slices. Layer with one piece each American, Colby-Jack and Havarti.

Cover with remaining bread slices.

In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet, melt 2 Tbsp. butter over medium heat. Add two sandwiches; cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Turn, and cook until cheese is melted, and both sides are golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes.

Repeat the procedure with the remaining 2 Tbsp. butter and the other two sandwiches.