Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Buttermilk Fried Cod with Easy Tartar Sauce

I had some buttermilk left over from the Roast Chicken Salad with Lemony Buttermilk Dressing and decided to use the remainder in a thin, creamy batter for simple fried cod. With a very thin coating of batter and panko breadcrumbs for breading, the fish remains light and fluffy despite being fried. In only three tablespoon of peanut oil.

The real flavor in this dish comes from the fresh tartar sauce. Simple, easy, traditional ingredients come together very quickly—and give you the most delicious results.

Serve the fried cod and tartar sauce with a side of oven fries for a lighter take on fish and chips.

Serves 2


For the Tartar Sauce
  • 1/3 cup light mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped dill pickle
  • 1 tbsp chopped chives
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp chopped capers
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
For the Cod
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup panko, or other fine, dry breadcrumb
  • 2 6-oz skinless cod filets, about 1 inch thick
  • 3 tbsp peanut oil

For the Tartar Sauce
  1. Combine the first 5 ingredients (through capers) in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes. (May also be made 1 day ahead.)
Tartar Sauce Ingredients Ready to Mix
Easy Tartar Sauce
For the Cod
  1. Whisk together the buttermilk and egg yolk in a bowl. Place the flour in another bowl and season with salt and pepper. Spread the panko in a baking dish or on a plate.
Breading Ingredients
  1. Gradually whisk the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture to form a thin batter. (It will coat a spoon but run off easily.)
  2. Dip each filet in the batter, coating well. Let excess drip off and press both sides of each filet into the breadcrumbs. Refrigerate 20-30 minutes. (Refrigeration helps the coating stick to the fish during cooking.)
Breaded Cod
  1. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and add the oil. When the oil is very hot, fry the fish until golden brown on the outside and just cooked through, 3-4 minutes per side, depending on thickness.
Fish after Turning
Serve the fish dolloped with tartar sauce and pass any remaining sauce at the table.

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