Spiced sautéed whitebait
I based this recipe on a blackened-fish spice mix I used to make years ago when it was all the rage. Serve with a wedge of lemon.
- Place the whitebait in a bowl and season with a touch of salt. Sprinkle with the lime juice, turmeric, chilli powder and cumin.
- Peel the ginger and garlic and finely chop.
- Heat a large frying pan until very hot. Place the whitebait in a wide sieve over a roasting dish or tray and liberally dust with flour, shaking the sieve to ensure the fish are evenly coated. Keep scooping the excess flour from the pan and shaking it back over the fish.
- Do not be tempted to use your fingers to stir the fish, as this results in a sticky mess.
- Once all the fish are lightly coated, add the oil to the pan with the chopped ginger and garlic. When the oil is hot, quickly and carefully sprinkle the whitebait evenly into the pan. Let it sit for 30 seconds before starting to gently shake the pan while using kitchen tongs to move the whitebait around. You want the flour to form a toasted crust around the seasoned fish. Season the fish with salt, then lift out and drain on absorbent paper. Divide the fish between 2 plates.
Serve this dish with potatoes roasted with lemon and anchovies. Simply cut waxy potatoes into chunks and allow them to colour in a little olive oil heated in a roasting tin. Cut a lemon into thick segments, add to the pan with a few anchovies and pour in a cup or two of chicken stock. Bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes until the potatoes are soft.