21 April 2010

Meine kleine fish

Since my fishing adventure a couple of weekends ago, I have been in the mood for seafood.  Epeccially fish and prawns.  Prawns I'm pretty boring with, and rarely do I venture away from cooking them with good ol' garlic and butter (be it on the BBQ or in a pan), but with fish I like to shake things up a bit.  This evening I decided would be a fish night, and one with a new way of cooking it... 

What, I ask you, is one to do when one has some lovely fresh fillets of fish, but doesn't fancy merely pan-frying them (though this can be the best way, sometimes, especcially with very very very fresh fish)?  Flick through some magazines until inspiration strikes.  After passing over numerous recipes for fish curry (just hate to overpower the poor delicate creature) I eventually settled on what looked like a winner - fish basquaise.  Fish basquaise is, as the name suggests, a dish whose origins lie somewhere in the Basque Country (a portion of northern Spain and southern France), and draws on the ingredients commonly found in the area - tomatoes, olives, capers.  Sounds good, doesn't it?  I though so too, until I flicked through ONE more magazine, and found this... 

Gremolata-crumbed fish with warm baked potato salad

So, the fish basquaise was shelved, for another day, in favour of a slightly lighter fish dish, one which really showcases the fish's delicate flavour and, for other caper-lovers, lets you taste those tasty morsels properly. 

1/4 cup parsley leaves, chopped (flat leaf, if possible)
zest from 1 lemon, grated
3 cups day-old breadcrumbs, dried in oven until crisp
2 tsp capers, drained and chopped
enough fish for 4 people
1/2 cup flour
1 egg, lightly beaten with 1 tbsp water
oil, for shallow frying
lemon wedges, to serve
  1. Combine parsley, zest, breadcrumbs and capers in shallow bowl, season to taste with a little salt and ground pepper. 
  2. Dust fish with flour, shaking off excess, dip in egg, then coat with breadcrumb mixture (gremolata), pressing onto fish, to coat evenly - make sure you coat both sides!!
  3. Shallow-fry fillets for about 2 minutes on each side, until golden. 
For baked potato salad, cut enough potatoes for 4 into chunks, place in 200 degree celcius oven, tossed with olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper.  After 20 minutes add a red onion, thinly sliced, and cook for further 10-15 minutes, or until cooked.  Whilest cooking whisk together 2 tbsp sour cream, 2 tbsp mayonnaise, 1 tbsp mustard (dijon is good, but best is wholegrain baby!!) and 1 tbsp water.  Remove from oven and combine with dressing.  Stir through 3 tbsp chopped fresh herbs (parsley, sage, coriander, chives, mixture of whatever is in the garden...).  

I served this with some rocket leaves on the side too, and some end-of-season tomatoes from the garden, but any greens on the side will do, hot or cold.  Enjoy!!   

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