Here’s my take on a British classic. Use any variety of fish that takes your fancy. I wanted to get the perfect crunch – obviously without using gluten, but also without using almond and coconut, which has been so overdone. So I was thrilled that this red lentil-based coating gives the perfect texture to these fish fingers. I love broad beans so created this smashed version as a different take on mushy peas.
You’ll Need (serves 2-3)
For the beans:
- 500g frozen broad beans, peeled (use fresh beans if they are in season)
- Sea salt
- small bunch of fresh parsley
- 60ml chicken or vegetable stock
- 40ml olive oil
For the fish fingers:
- 150g red lentils
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon ground coriander
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 large egg, preferably free-range or organic
- 300g fresh cod fillet
- Coconut oil
- Cook the broad beans in salted boiling water for 10 minutes. Drain, remove a handful and put to one side for later, then put the rest into a blender with the parsley.
- Add the stock and olive oil and blend until smooth. Mix in half the reserved beans.
- Pulse the red lentils in a heavy-duty food processor until you have a flour.Mix in the salt, pepper, turmeric, coriander and lemon zest then put on a deep plate or into a shallow bowl. Whisk the egg in another bowl.
- Rinse the cod fillet, pat it dry with kitchen towel and cut into sticks or ‘fingers’. Dip the cod pieces into the whisked egg and then into the red lentil mixture, making sure they are well coated on all sides. Place the coated pieces on a wire rack while you coat the rest.
- In a small deep pan, heat 6 tablespoons of coconut oil and fry some of the fish fingers, making sure they are not touching each other. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown.
- Transfer to a plate covered in kitchen towel while you fry the rest.
- Serve the fish fingers and broad bean smash with wedges of lemon and the remaining broad beans on top.
This recipe appears in my book Cook. Nourish. Glow. (photo credit: Susan Bell)