March 6, 2012 by Amie M
Was actually today! It was a little coffee date to meet each other before we went to the Ball that lasted forever, literally and figuratively.
Last night, after some hectic “Oh crapfish” at work when I realized I forgot to take the fish out for supper, then some frantic running Basa fillets under lukewarm to cold water to thaw really fast, I made The Man some fish he actually liked.
Once again, Ingredient Assemble! You will need whitefish fillets (I used Basa because that’s what I had in the freezer, not pictured because they were frantically thawing in the sink. Audrey loved the smell), egg white, buttermilk, flour, bread crumbs (I only had a teaspoon so I made some from stale crakers), paprika, salt, cayenne pepper, veg or canola oil.
To make your own buttermilk (because, seriously, who always has buttermilk in their fridge?):
Pour out milk into a wet measure cup to just below the amount you need.
Use white vinegar to take it all the way.
Buttermilk is acidic milk, or sour milk.
Now to make your own breadcrumbs, take some stale crackers, and smash the snot out of them. In a sealed bag, this could get messy. Mom never had breadcrumbs, she always just used stale crackers.
Take your fish, pat dry. You want all moisture out of them, otherwise the crumbs won’t stick, and they won’t crispy nicely. Soggy crumbs are crumby.
Cut the fillets in half. You want fish fingers. Set aside, and be ready to distract your cat who normally is not interested in fish, but is curious nonetheless.
Start oven to 500F, place rack at top of oven. You want these babies to FRY, but in the oven, with less oil, so it’s a lot healthier. Oil a broiling pan, or use an oiled wirerack on top of a foil lined baking sheet.
In a wide shallow dish, combine egg white and 1/2 c buttermilk. Whisk.
In another wide shallow dish, stir together 1/2 c flour, 1/2 c bread crumbs, 2 t paprika, 1 t salt, 1/2 t cayenne pepper.
Set up your work flow station. Crumbs, then milk.
Take a fish finger, dip and roll in bread crumbs.
Then wet in milk.
Then back to crumbs. Evenly and thoroughly coat.
Use a brush and lightly dab oil on top of each fillet. This part is key! Without the little bit of oil, the batter won’t puff up and get yummy crispy.
Bake on top rack until golden and crispy, 12-15 minutes.
Now for my mom’s secret tartar sauce. All measurements are eyeballed.
Take about 1 T mayo, 1 T relish, 1 t paprika, 2 t onion juice, and mix. If you don’t have relish, chop up some pickles really fine.
Whoa, Ma! I done just gave way yer sauce on de internets! Love you.
I served these bad boy fingers with some leftover vegetable biryani and straggler asparagus.
Oven “Fried” Fish (once again, from Chatelaine’s Modern Classics)
4 fish fillets
1 egg white
1/2 c buttermilk
1/2 c flour
2 t paprika
1 t salt
1/2 t cayenne pepper
Put rack on top shelf in oven, and preheat to 500F. Line a baking sheet with foil and put a wire rack on top. Oil rack.
Pat fish dry with paper towels. Slice in half, lengthwise.
In wide shallow dish whisk egg white with buttermilk.
In another wide shallow dish stir flour with bread crumbs, paprika, salt and cayenne.
One piece at a time, lightly coat in flour mixture. Shake off excess, then dip into milk mixture. Shake off excess liquid, then coat in flour mixture again.
Using a brush, lightly dab or spray oil as evenly as possible over coating.
Bake on top rack for 12-15 minutes until coasting is crispy and golden.