Crispy Oven Fish Fry with Mushy Peas
5 tablespoons butter
3 cups panko crumbs
1 tablespoon seafood seasoning (recommended: Old Bay) or Szeged Fish spice, (a palmful)
1 tablespoon granulated onion, (a palmful)
1 tablespoon granulated garlic, (a palmful)
1 lemon or lime, zested
A couple tablespoons freshly chopped thyme leaves
A couple tablespoons finely chopped chives
1 1/2-2 pounds cod, cut from the thickest part of fillets shaped into 8 rectangular batons
2 extra large egg whites, beaten to frothy
1 cup packed flat-leaf parsley
1 cup packed fresh mint
3 cups freshly shelled peas or frozen and defrosted organic peas, patted dry
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
2 large shallots, finely chopped
2 cups chicken stock-in-a-box
Freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oven to 400°F. Arrange a baking rack over the top of a baking sheet.
Melt 4 tablespoons butter over low heat in small pot. Put the bread crumbs in a shallow dish and douse with the melted butter and toss to combine. Season with seafood seasoning, granulated onion powder, granulated garlic, citrus zest, thyme and chives.
Clean and pat the fish dry, then season with salt, to taste. Coat the fish in egg whites, then gently press them into the bread crumbs to coat evenly, then arrange them on the baking rack. Bake on center rack of the oven until the fish is white and flaky and the crumbs are golden, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, add the parsley and mint to a food processor and pulse to finely chop, then scrape into a bowl and set aside. Return the base to the processor; do not rinse the base. Add the peas and pulse until very finely chopped.
In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of EVOO, a turn of the pan, and the remaining butter over medium heat. Add the shallots and sauté for 5 minutes, then add the stock and peas and bring to a bubble over medium-high heat. Cook the fresh peas for about 10 minutes, and about 6-7 minutes, if using frozen defrosted peas. When most of the liquid has evaporated, season with salt and pepper, to taste, and stir in the herbs. Remove from the heat. Spoon pools of not-so-mushy peas onto each dinner plate and top with crispy fish batons. Douse the fish with lots of malt vinegar and enjoy!