Friday, April 6, 2012

Crispy Oven Baked Fish

This fish may look pretty unassuming but it is some of the best oven baked fish I've ever had.  It was incredibly flavorful - the homemade breadcrumbs and the touch of paprika made a big difference.  Also, while the fish had a crispy crust, the fish still stayed moist, thanks to the yogurt layer.

While store-bought breadcrumbs probably could be substituted in a pinch, I would highly recommend making your own.  I think it really helps to make this dish spectactular.  You could make the breadcrumbs up to the day before and just store them in an air-tight container at room temperature to cut down on the cooking time before dinner. 
I served this with couscous and an arugula salad but I think it also would have been great with these gorgonzola smashed potatoes and asparagus (I'm still waiting on my farmers market to have some!)

Crispy Oven Baked Fish
Taken from: Elly Says Opa
Serves 4-6
  • 4 slices whole wheat bread, torn into 1″ pieces (I used part of a leftover baguette)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil or melted butter
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons + 2 tablespoons flour (I used white whole wheat)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 Tbsp. plain yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh minced parsley
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 4 6-ounce cod or haddock fillets, 1.5″ thick (I probably had 6 4-oz cod fillets which worked fine)
  • lemon wedges, for serving
  1. (Could make the breadcrumbs the day before and store in air-tight container at room temp.) For breadcrumbs: Adjust the rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place the bread in a food processor and pulse until coarse crumbs form, about 10 or 12 pulses (mine took longer).
  3. Put the breadcrumbs on a baking sheet and toss with the oil/butter and salt and pepper to taste, then spread into an even layer. Place in the oven and bake for 8-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and dry. Set aside to cool for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Increase the oven temperature to 425 and place a wire rack on top of a baking sheet; spray or brush rack with oil.
  5. Meanwhile, place 3 Tbsp. of the flour in a shallow bowl or plate. In a second shallow bowl, mix together the eggs, yogurt, paprika, cayenne, and about 1/4 tsp. pepper. Whisk in the remaining 2 Tbsp. flour until a smooth, thick batter is formed.
  6. In a third shallow dish, mix together the parsley and shallot with the cooled breadcrumbs.
  7. Pat each piece of cod dry with a paper towel, and then season with salt and pepper. One by one, take each piece of fish and dredge into the flour, then into the batter, and finally into the breadcrumbs, patting lightly to make sure breading adheres. Place on the wire rack.
  8. Bake the fish for 17-25 minutes, or until coating is golden and flakes easily when gently poked with a fork. (I broiled mine for a minute or two at the end to make sure the coating is golden.)
  9. Serve the fish with lemon wedges.


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