three-step breading method is what creates a wonderful crust on this healthy
baked fish. In this method, the first dredge in cornstarch gives the egg wash
something to cling to, so that the final crunchy quinoa-flake coating will
stick securely to the egg. It’s like all the coatings are hugging each other.
Don’t skip the cornstarch dredge: If you do, the egg wash will slip right off
the fish," writes Jennifer Brulé in her new book, "Learn to Cook 25 Southern Classics 3 Ways: Traditional, Contemporary, International" now available on Amazon.
"Quinoa flakes are different from ordinary quinoa (that round seed
that looks like couscous). The flakes are made from the seed, but are lighter
and perfect to use as a coating when a crunchy exterior is desired. You can
find quinoa flakes in the baking section of many supermarkets and most natural
food stores," she writes.
Quinoa-Crusted Baked Fish
teaspoon garlic powder
teaspoon onion powder
teaspoon kosher or sea salt
teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
cup fine cornmeal (yellow or white)
cup quinoa flakes
pound white fish fillets (flounder, grouper, or catfish)
cup melted coconut oil (you may have some left over)
1. Preheat the oven to 425°. Spray a sheet pan with nonstick cooking
spray. Mix the garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper together in a small
bowl. Set aside.
2. Set up the breading station: In a pie plate, place the cornstarch.
In a second pie plate, mix together the cornmeal, quinoa flakes, and paprika.
In a third pie plate, whisk together the eggs and buttermilk.
3. Dry the fish fillets between paper towels and season both sides
with the garlic powder mixture. Dredge the fish, one fillet at a time, in the
cornstarch, shaking off the excess. Dip the fillet in the egg mixture (making
sure it’s well coated) and then coat it in the cornmeal mixture. Lay the
fillets on the prepared pan as you go.
4. Drizzle 1/2–1 teaspoon of the coconut oil on the top of each
fillet and rub the oil evenly into the breading with the back of a spoon. Bake
for 25 minutes. The fish will be tender on the inside, with a crunchy exterior,
though not as pretty and golden as the fried version. Serve at once.