Sunday, 6 January 2013

Week 1 - Moroccan Fish and Chips

I wanted to begin with something a little ambitious but after cooking the whole Christmas lunch I think I may have scaled down those ambitions, for the first week anyway. The week ahead in Adelaide boasts numerous days above 40° so I instantly thought... Seafood. 

This recipe is a fancy take on fish and chips and looks delicious. Fish is a fairly new ingredient that I have learnt to enjoy and can't wait to give it a go!

Book: Jamie Does...

Recipe: Moroccan Fish and Chips

Marinating the Fish

Fish after being pan fried

The Finished Product.. Delish!
Not to forget.. my little helper for the evening, waiting patiently until I drop some food.


Serves 4

600 grams Monkfish tails, skin off, trimmed and cut into 5cm pieces
olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1kg baking potatoes, scrubbed clean
2 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
½ a small cucumber, halved and sliced
1 carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks
1 tablespoon capers, drained
a small bunch of fresh coriander, leaves picked
4 Arab-style breads or flatbread
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
natural yoghurt, to serve

For the Marinade:
½ tablespoon paprica
½ tablespoon turmeric
½ tablespoon ground ginger
½ tablespoon ground coriander
a small bunch of fresh flat leaf parsley, finely chopped


Preheat the oven to 200°C. Put your fish into a bowl with all the marinade ingredients, 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a nice big pinch of salt and pepper. Mix well so that the monkfish gets evenly coated, then cover with cling film and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. 

Meanwhile, cut the potatoes into 1cm chips and spread out in a single layer on 2 large roasting trays. Drizzle over a few lugs of olive pol, season, and toss the chips until coated. Roast for about 30 to 40 minutes, or until cooked through crisp and lightly golden. Halfway through the cooking time swap trays around and give a good shake so all the chips cook evenly.

Put a griddle pan or large non-stick fry pan on a high heat to get really hot. Make your salad by mixing the tomatoes, cucumber, carrot, capers and coriander together in a bowl. 

About 10 minutes before your chips are ready, put fish pieces into the screaming hot pan and cook, turning every couple of minutes for 5 to 7 minutes, until firm and cooked through. You'll need to do this in two batches if in a small pan. Warm breads in a hot dry pan for 30 seconds each side, or wrap in foil and pop them into the oven for a few minutes. Dress the salad with the white wine vinegar and extra virgin olive oil, then season with a pinch of salt and pepper and toss. 

Tear your warm breads in half and slit them open with a knife. Stuff the pockets with a small haldful of salad, a few monkfish chunks and a dollop of yoghurt. Sprinkle a little paprika over your chips and serve on the side. 

Changes Made: As I have never heard to Monkfish I went in search for a firm white fish, Basa is what I decided on. A cheap, delicious fish that held its shape and worked well. I also hate coriander so substituted it for basil which went well, although I still used ground coriander as I feel its taste is not as strong. 

Results: What a great way to start the year! As being someone who has never cooked fish before I was a little sceptical as to how hard this recipe would be.. it was so simple and so delicious... which is so Jamie. I love eating with my hands and this dish allowed me to do what I love. The idea of putting everything in a pocket was great. On a hot summer night this is just what you want. 

The salad crunchiness was just what you need with a soft white fish and surprisingly my little pita's didn't fall apart! The biggest issue was the marinade/fish sticking to the pan, not sure what happened here but it was an issue as I had to wash the pan in-between the batches of fish causing the fish to cool down before serving. It was a bit hit overall and something I would definitely do again.

Next Time: The yogurt could have done with some garlic and lemon added to it just to bring everything together. I would also look for a thicker flatbread. 

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