Crispy Panfried Lake Whitefish
- 1 cup whole wheat or any flour
- sprinkle or two sea salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1 tbsp any dried herb or spice
- 1 zest and juice of a lemon
- 4 – 6 (2 pounds) PurePac Whitefish
- large splash vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons Butter
Preheat your largest, heaviest sauté pan or skillet over medium-high heat. A heavier pan will distribute the heat more evenly than a thin one.
Whisk together the flour, salt and pepper, paprika, herb and lemon zest.
Pour the seasoned flour into a shallow dish large enough to hold 1 or 2 Whitefish fillets. Depending on the size of the fillets, and your guests’ inclination to share, cut the fish into individual portions or leave whole.
Dredge fillet pieces in the seasoned flour until they are evenly coated. Rest on a pan or plate but don’t stack them on top of one another.
Pour a large splash of vegetable oil into the pan, enough to cover the pan’s bottom in a thin film. Add the butter to the centre of the oil. The oil will protect the delicate butter from burning, and the butter will add lots of brown flavour. When the butter begins to brown and sizzle, swirl it around the pan and quickly add the fish fillets. Turn up the heat, adjusting it as needed to keep the pan sizzling hot.
Cook the fish in batches so they will all brown evenly. Cook the first side of the fillets for a few minutes until they’re golden brown and beautiful. Carefully flip them and continue with the other side. You may find it useful to add a bit more butter after you flip the fish over.
Continue until the fish cooks through. Add the lemon juice and swirl the pan. It will sizzle, form a quick sauce with the butter and coat each fillet. Serve immediately.
Try replacing half or more of the flour with fine cornmeal. Dill, thyme, tarragon and oregano all work well as fresh herbs while chili powder, curry powder, ground cumin and red pepper flakes all make excellent spices.