Leave it to French cookbook author Estérelle Payany to teach us how to make fish sticks at home.
The author of “Better Made At Home: Salty, Sweet, and Satisfying Snacks and Pantry Staples You Can Make Yourself” (Black Dog & Leventhal, $19.95) wants cooks to know that they don’t have to rely on store-bought ingredients like nut butters, barbecue sauces and even little cups of chocolate pudding to fill their pantries and freezers.
In her new book, you’ll find recipes for all kinds of spreads, crackers, cookies, syrups and caramels, but some savory dishes, too, like potato chips, turkey cordon bleu, French fries and these fish sticks, which you might eat in their entirety before the kids even know you’ve made them.
4 slices stale bread
14 oz. thick mild white fish fillets, such as cod, halibut or haddock
1/3 cup all‑purpose flour
2 pinches salt
Freshly ground white pepper
1 large egg white
4 tsp. oil, for cooking
To make the breadcrumbs, preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Cut the bread into pieces and lay them on a baking sheet. Bake for about 30 minutes until crispy and dry. Turn the bread into crumbs in a blender or food processor.
To make the fish sticks, put the fish in the freezer for 1 hour to make it easier to cut into pieces.
Spread the flour in a shallow dish and mix it with salt and pepper. Put the egg white in another bowl and beat it lightly with a fork. Spread the breadcrumbs in a third dish.
Using a sharp knife, cut the frozen fish into sticks about 3 1/2 inches long and 1 inch wide.
Coat the fish sticks first in the flour, then in the egg white, and finally in the breadcrumbs.
Pour the oil into a skillet and fry the fish sticks for 5 minutes on each side over high heat until they’re golden and cooked through.
Drain the fish sticks on paper towels and serve them hot with tartar sauce or Béarnaise. Serves 8.
— From “Better Made At Home: Salty, Sweet, and Satisfying Snacks and Pantry Staples You Can Make Yourself” by Estérelle Payany (Black Dog & Leventhal, $19.95)