Like many children, one of my favourite moments in my mother's kitchen when growing up were the (ready-purchased, frozen) fish sticks. A novelty at the time, it entailed all things good and healthy and tasty in my mind. The fact that they were deep-fried only served as the added bonus for being a good child...
Fast forward to present day, when I realise that I haven't had fish sticks for some decades, because: a. I'm not thrilled by deep-frying anything, b. when frozen meat/fish is already covered in "breadcrumbs", I cannot see what the original looks like, and I do want to see the quality... c. the end result more often than not has deceived me in the taste department.
Enter my friend Jessi (check out her great blog!), who - being the investigative mind - has looked around and come up with a great recipe for home-made baked fish sticks. What a great invention! I copied her recipe, made some changes (of course...) and I am thrilled to say I am happy again, like a child, to taste the fish sticks from so long ago...
Jessi's fish sticks
|fish sticks with "tartar" sauce|
400g white fish, fresh or thawed
4 wheat crackers (I used the Ikea ones)
100g white breadcrumbs
Seasoning: smoked paprika, dried onion, salt/pepper
2 eggs, beaten
200g white flour (I used gluten-free)
juice from 1 lemon
Preheat oven at 200oC. Pulse crackers with breadcrumbs and seasoning to the consistency desired: I did it in two batches, and had one super-fine and one slightly thicker (if anything, I want variety!). I use Jessi's method of having everything ready on the counter, so that I work very quickly: cut the fish into a 2cm*5cm sticks. Quickly dip in lemon juice, cover in flour, pat the extra off, dunk in egg mixture with the help of two forks, and then dive in crumbs and shake to cover the whole lot.
In a baking tray, place a baking sheet, and spray with oil. Place the breadcrumb-covered fish sticks, spray with a tiny bit of oil and cook for about 10-15 minutes, turning once. Delish!!!
Now, with these sticks what better accompaniment but a tartar sauce???
Problem: I like neither pickles nor capers (standard part of a tartar sauce). After researching and tasting yet again, this is an amazing recipe I came up with that fully meets the seal of approval from even the very difficult customers:
|good as the real one....|
My "tartar sauce"
120g Greek yogurt
juice from one small lemon
1 hard-boiled egg, finely chopped
2 tbsp shallot, finely chopped
10 green olives, finely chopped
2 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
Combine, taste, store in air-tight container, keep in fridge...