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
Yield: 4 Servings
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
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
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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