Panko-crusted cod with tartar sauce
#100daysofcooking, Newfoundland, Recipes

Day 54: As cod is my witness


Baked Panko-crusted Cod with Tartar Sauce


I blame the pea soup. Yesterday’s post made me nostalgic for our 2016 holiday in Newfoundland and the seemingly endless platters of the best fish and chips ever.

And by fish, I mean cod.

That’s not my line, by the way. It belongs to Cap’n Dave Boyd of Prime Berth in Twillingate, who conducts iceberg, fishing and museum tours for we “come-from-aways” while delivering a steady stream of facts, lore and commentary.

Such as: “Out here, when we say fish we mean cod. Herring is herring, flounder is flounder, halibut is halibut and fish is cod.” (In Newfinese, this is pronounced “cad.”)

In other words, don’t ask what is the fish in the fish and chips. If it was halibut, they would have said so. Fish is cod.

When you’re in Alberta, fish is the exception — to beef, chicken, pork and the like. In our house we buy fish infrequently: usually salmon, sometimes swordfish and, if we are in a mood to splurge, tuna.

But a week in Newfoundland changes your outlook on fish, from its importance to the province, its role in the “screeching in” ceremony, and the best ways to cook it. Now we’re more likely to buy cod than any other type of fish.

Pan-fried cod is gosh-darn good and makes you feel like a healthy eater. (Because butter is totally a health food.) You will feel less virtuous consuming fish and chips served up pub-style — deep-fried with sides of gravy, dressing and a pint. But life is short. You can always buy bigger pants.

At home, thank goodness, we do not have a deep fryer nor do we have any intention of getting one. But I’ve found you can almost — almost! — get the crispy texture of deep-fried cod with panko-style breadcrumbs and a hot oven.

The cod used in today’s Kitchen Castoff cooking had been in the freezer a while so it was time to get it used up. As you might say in Newfinese, best to eat it now before the arse falls right out of ‘er.

Long may your big jib draw! You may now kiss the fish.

Kitchen Castoff used

Frozen cod fillets

Panko-crusted cod with tartar sauce
A healthier version of fish and chips: the cod is panko-crusted rather than deep fried, served with roasted potatoes and broccoli.

This is how we did it

For the cod:

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs cod, patted dry with paper towels and cut into serving size pieces
  • 2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg plus 1 egg white, beaten
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • olive oil cooking spray

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray, or rub with a combination of olive oil and butter

Mix panko with garlic salt, onion powder and pepper in a large flat bowl. Dip the fish into the egg, then into the panko, pressing in to get a good crust on the fish. Place on cookie sheet. When all the fish is coated, spray with the olive oil spray.

Bake for about 15 minutes or until the coating is browned and the fish flakes easily.

Recipe is from food.com.

For the tartar sauce:

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 green onion, chopped
  • 3/4 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp chopped pickles
  • 1/2 tbsp chopped capers
  • Salt and ground pepper to taste

Method

Combine all the ingredients. Store, covered and in the refrigerator, until you are ready to use it.

Recipe is from food.com.


Curious about my “Kitchen Castoffs” concept? Here’s the explainer describing my 100-day project.

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