Flaky, Tender and Crispy Fish

Flaky, Tender and Crispy Fish

I think of this dish as a homemade fish and chips. I truly believe this is the best way to cook fish in a home kitchen.

I created this dish a couple of years ago after I enjoyed a walleye (or pickerel as we call it in Canada) fillet prepared this way. As much as I love beautiful crunchy crust all around the fish, it’s difficult to attain without a deep fryer. Coating both sides of fish in breadcrumbs typically results in neither side being as crispy as desired, one side almost always being soggy, furthermore, it’s so easy to overcook the fish this way.

Low How Crispy and Golden that fish looks!

But with this recipe, we focus all our effort on getting just the one side crunchy and golden, cooking the fish to 145°F internal temperature, ensuring it’s perfectly flaky and never overcooked. Since there’s no breading on the bottom, it will never get soggy!

I absolutely adore this recipe. It doesn’t take long at all to make, no complex fancy ingredients, but the fish always comes out perfectly. Ideally, your fish fillet should be at least 1″ tall. Your overcall baking time will need to be adjusted based on the side of the wish. This recipe works for all types of white fish – haddock, cod, pickerel.

Ok! Let’s get cooking!

DifficultyBeginner

Yields4 Servings
Prep Time10 minsCook Time20 minsTotal Time30 mins

 4 filets of white fish such as cod or walleye
 ½ cup flour
 1 egg
 1 ⅓ cups Panko-style breadcrubs
 kosher salt
 freshly ground black pepper
 oil, for pan frying
 Lemon slices, for serving, optional
 Parsley, for garnish, optional
 tartar sauce, for serving, optional

1

Preheat oven to 325.

2

Set up your breading station by placing flour, beaten egg and breadcrumbs into 3 separate bowls. White fish has very mild flavour, so be sure to season it with salt and pepper. Then season each bowl (flour, egg and bread crumbs) with additional salt and pepper to ensure all elements of the dish are well seasoned and the flavour is not flat.

3

Heat oil in oven safe, ideally cast iron, skillet over medium heat for at least 3 minutes until shimmering. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.

4

Dip ONLY ONE SIDE of the fish in flour, then egg, then press it into panko. Be sure to press the fish firmly into the crumbs to ensure the crumbs adhere well to the fish.

5

Place the fish, breaded side down, into your preheated pan and cook on just one side until crunchy and golden, for about 4-6 minutes, watching closely not to burn. Be sure not to burn it, while ensuring it gets a nice golden crust. Unfortunately, the heat distribution is not always even, so you may need to move your fish around and rotate to ensure its entire breaded surface is evenly browned.

Invert your fish into a baking sheet, skin side up, and place in the oven. Do not walk away, it will cook fast. It depends on the size of your fillet, but the cooking time will be only around 5 minutes. The internal temperature should register at 145 and the fish should be easily pierced with a fork and easily flake into nice, firm and moist flakes. If you insert a fork into the flesh of the fish and get some resistance - cook it a bit longer.

For a thin fillet of fish, you may only need 2-3 minutes in the oven. For thicker, you may need around 10 minutes. But it's unlikely it will take much longer. So watch closely.

6

Plate the fish and garnish. Handle the fish very carefully to ensure it doesn't fall apart as you plate it as it will be so flaky. Consider serving this with tartar sauce and lemon wedges.

Ingredients

 4 filets of white fish such as cod or walleye
 ½ cup flour
 1 egg
 1 ⅓ cups Panko-style breadcrubs
 kosher salt
 freshly ground black pepper
 oil, for pan frying
 Lemon slices, for serving, optional
 Parsley, for garnish, optional
 tartar sauce, for serving, optional

Directions

1

Preheat oven to 325.

2

Set up your breading station by placing flour, beaten egg and breadcrumbs into 3 separate bowls. White fish has very mild flavour, so be sure to season it with salt and pepper. Then season each bowl (flour, egg and bread crumbs) with additional salt and pepper to ensure all elements of the dish are well seasoned and the flavour is not flat.

3

Heat oil in oven safe, ideally cast iron, skillet over medium heat for at least 3 minutes until shimmering. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.

4

Dip ONLY ONE SIDE of the fish in flour, then egg, then press it into panko. Be sure to press the fish firmly into the crumbs to ensure the crumbs adhere well to the fish.

5

Place the fish, breaded side down, into your preheated pan and cook on just one side until crunchy and golden, for about 4-6 minutes, watching closely not to burn. Be sure not to burn it, while ensuring it gets a nice golden crust. Unfortunately, the heat distribution is not always even, so you may need to move your fish around and rotate to ensure its entire breaded surface is evenly browned.

Invert your fish into a baking sheet, skin side up, and place in the oven. Do not walk away, it will cook fast. It depends on the size of your fillet, but the cooking time will be only around 5 minutes. The internal temperature should register at 145 and the fish should be easily pierced with a fork and easily flake into nice, firm and moist flakes. If you insert a fork into the flesh of the fish and get some resistance - cook it a bit longer.

For a thin fillet of fish, you may only need 2-3 minutes in the oven. For thicker, you may need around 10 minutes. But it's unlikely it will take much longer. So watch closely.

6

Plate the fish and garnish. Handle the fish very carefully to ensure it doesn't fall apart as you plate it as it will be so flaky. Consider serving this with tartar sauce and lemon wedges.

Pan Seared Walleye
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