There is a little British pub near my house that serves up amazing fish and chips for just $5. They are salty, crunchy, slightly greasy, and present a challenge to someone like me who has difficulty eating just one. But you know me, I’m always up for a challenge.

I decided to create a healthier version of this British pub staple, while also upscaling a bit with some unexpected, non-traditional ingredients. Of course, I had to keep the traditional beer in the ingredient list because what are fish sticks without beer?

And so my Baked, Beer-Battered Tilapia Fish Sticks were born. After experimenting with several different kinds of fish, I elected to use tilapia because it’s firm, mild, and very low in fat.

I used a dredging method to create a savory coating that crisps up nicely in a hot oven. In the first bowl, I use an unbleached all-purpose flour with a little dry, cultured buttermilk for additional flavor. The second bowl contains nothing but beer. I recommend using a light, hoppy beer with citrus notes; I used a Double Mountain Vaporizer IPA. The base coating of flour and buttermilk then dipped in the beer creates a nice gooey coating on the fish which then helps the contents of the third bowl stick to the fish. In that third bowl I use panko, or Japanese style, bread crumbs with a little dried dill mixed in for extra flavor. I love how crispy and light panko bread crumbs bake up in the oven, they are perfect for these types of dishes.

My Sea Salt and Vinegar Parsnip Chips came together a little more quickly for me. In fact, I nailed the recipe on my first try. I decided to skip the potato and use parsnips for this dish because they have more nutrients and vitamins than their potato cousins. Parsnips also have a delicious sweet taste when cooked, which is the perfect partner for a sea salt and vinegar flavor combination.

And what would fish and chips be without a creamy sauce to dip it in? In the States, we love our tartar sauce, but in the UK you’ll find these served with a side of mayonnaise. Leaning towards tradition, I created a mayonnaise-like Roasted Garlic and Yogurt Aioli. Roasting the garlic first creates a sweet, caramelized flavor which I then offset with tart red wine vinegar and plain, nonfat Greek yogurt. It’s the perfect dipping partner for these two dishes.

 

Looking for a healthy alternative to traditional deep-fried fish and chips? Try this delicious version featuring Baked Beer-Battered Tilapia Fish Sticks and Sea Salt and Vinegar Parnsip Chips with a creamy Roasted Garlic and Yogurt Aioli on the side. It’s easy, it’s scrumptious, and it’s good for you. What more could you want?

Recipes by Colleen Fields


Baked, Beer-Battered Tilapia Fish Sticks

Yield: 4 Servings

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. raw tilapia filets, sliced into 1″ wide sticks
  • 1/4 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp dry, cultured buttermilk powder
  • 1/4 cup beer
  • 1 cup panko (Japanese style) breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp dried dill weed

Cooking Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425F. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Prepare 3 shallow, medium bowls for dredging:
    Bowl 1- mix together the flour and buttermilk powder
    Bowl 2 – pour the beer in here
    Bowl 3 – mix together the breadcrumbs and dill
  3. Take a piece of the fish and roll first in the flour and buttermilk until it is well coated. Shake off the excess then roll in the beer. Again, shake off the excess then roll it in the panko bread crumbs until it is well coated. Shake off the excess and place on the baking sheet. Repeat until all the fish has been used.
  4. Bake for 10-15 minutes until the breadcrumbs are golden and crispy and the fish is cooked through. Serve immediately.
Nutritional Information: Calories 193.7, Total Fat 2.5g, Cholesterol 55.3mg, Sodium 104.0mg, Total Carbs 12.3g, Dietary Fiber 0.7g, Protein 24.8g

Sea Salt and Vinegar Parsnip Chips

Yield: 4 Servings

Ingredients

  • 2 parsnips, peeled and sliced into 1/4″ rounds
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt

Cooking Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425F. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Whisk together the oil and vinegar until well combined. Toss with the parsnips so that the parsnip pieces are well coated. Spread on the baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle the salt over the top so that all parsnip slices are coated.
  3. Bake 10-15 minutes or until the chips are lightly browned and slightly crisp. Serve immediately
Nutritional Information: Calories: 86.8, Total Fat 3.7g, Cholesterol 0.0mg, Sodium 568.0mg, Total Carbs 13.6g, Dietary Fiber 2.9g, Protein 1.1 g

Roasted Garlic and Yogurt Aioli

Yield: 4 Servings

Ingredients

  • 1 whole bulb of garlic
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 cup nonfat, plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • pinch coarse sea salt
  • dash freshly ground black pepper

Cooking Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425F.
  2. Slice the very tip of the top of the garlic bulb off. Place in a small baking container with a lid. Drizzle with the 1 tsp of olive oil. Place the top of the bulb back in place then cover and bake for about 30 minutes or until the cloves are completely gooey. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
  3. In a food processor, combine the extra virgin olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Squeeze all of the creamy cloves of garlic out of their papery shells and into the food processor, making sure not get any of the shells in the food processor.
  4. Pulse the food processor until the mixture is well combined and completely creamy. Keeps for up to a week, covered, in the fridge.
Nutritional information: Calories 89.0, Total Fat 5.0g, Cholesterol 0.0mg, Sodium 79.0mg, Total Carbs 5.1g, Dietary Fiber 0.2g, Protein 6.5g

 

 

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Colleen Fields is a food enthusiast and healthy lifestyle convert who has married these two interests to create delicious dishes that lead to long term weight loss success. As a single, working mom, Colleen struggled with her weight for years and tried every diet out there without success. When she began her weight loss journey, she realized that her cooking style needed to change. However, Colleen recognized that the only “healthy” cookbooks and television shows available focused on deprivational diets rather than behavioral changes that lead to long term weight loss success. As a result, she began experimenting and creating her own dishes. By eating smarter and moving more, Colleen took back her life and has lost over 100 pounds, going from a size 26W to a size 12, and maintains her weight today. Through her food blog, www.colleens-kitchen.com, and cookbooks Colleen hopes to share her success with others struggling with obesity and demonstrate that a healthy lifestyle is not only obtainable, but it is also sustainable. Follow Colleen on Facebook, Google +, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube.