Fish fingers get a Middle Eastern makeover with the addition of falafel mix to the breading. Served with a simple salad of chopped vegetables and a rich sesame tahini sauce, this is a terrific meal for a warm summer evening.
¼ cup tahini paste
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus more to taste
1 large garlic clove, mashed or grated
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 Persian cucumber, trimmed and diced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
¼ cup diced red onion
¼ cup diced red bell pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for frying
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
½ cup dry falafel mix
1 portion rockfish, (pacific cod, or lingcod (12 to 14 ounces), cut into 1-inch wide strips Available in Our Seafood Subscription Box
Make the Tahini Sauce
To make the tahini sauce, in a small bowl, whisk together the tahini paste, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, the garlic, and ¼ cup water until smooth. The mixture will be thick at first, then loosen as it combines. Add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed to achieve a pourable consistency. Season with salt and lemon juice.
Make the Salad
To make the salad, in a medium bowl, combine the cucumber, tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, parsley, 2 tablespoons oil, and remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Prep the Fish
Place the flour, egg, and falafel mix separately into 3 shallow bowls. Pat the fish dry and dust lightly with the flour. Dip the fish into the egg mixture, tapping off any excess flour first, then dredge in the falafel mix, pressing to adhere. Transfer to a plate.
Cook the Fish and Serve
Add ½ inch oil to a medium skillet and place over medium-high heat. When the oil reaches 400°F on a deep-frying thermometer, add the fish strips, in batches if necessary. Fry, turning once or twice, until golden and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle lightly with salt. (Alternatively, spray the fish fingers with cooking spray and cook for about 16 minutes in an air fryer)
Serve immediately with the Israeli salad alongside and the tahini sauce for dipping.
Pair it Up
Light and refreshing pilsner or lager is the perfect accompaniment to crispy fried fish.
Change it Up
Fill a warm pita with leftover fish and salad and drizzle with tahini for a portable next-day lunch.
Lighten it Up
Tahini has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties shown to reduce risk factors for heart disease. The bell peppers and tomatoes in the salad are high in vitamin C.