Prepare your next fried fish at home with this easy cod dinner that takes less than 30 minutes. Crispy on the outside, buttery on the inside and as flavorful as it gets.
- ½ cups All purpose flour
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cups Rice flour
- ¼ cups crushed cornflakes
- ¼ cups Plain dry breadcrumbs
- 2 cups Vegetable oil
- 1-½ pound Wild cod loins
- 1 cup Whole milk, and more
- 1 cup club soda
- 1 teaspoon fish sauce
To prepare the fish paste for the cod, you will need to start with 2 medium sized bowls. In the first bowl, season the all-purpose flour with salt and pepper. In the second bowl, whisk together the rice flour, cornflakes and breadcrumbs.
Cut the cod into 2-inch pieces. Preheat the oven to 200ºF.
Pour vegetable oil into a 12 inch cast iron skillet. It should come in about 1/4 inch deep. Start heating the oil over medium-high heat. It will heat up as you prepare the cod.
Place the cod in a third bowl. Pour enough milk over the cod to cover the pieces, then mix by gently massaging the milk into the meat with your fingers. Massage is important, so don’t skip it. It adds richness and moisture to the fish and gives the best result.
Combine club soda and fish sauce. Pour half of the soda mixture into the bowl with the rice flour and stir vigorously with a fork until the mixture is frothy. Avoid using a whisk as the soda batter will thicken quickly to get stuck in it. Add the remaining soda mixture to the batter and stir until frothy.
Drain the milk from the fish pieces. Throw away the milk. Add the cod a few pieces at a time to the seasoned all-purpose flour and toss to coat well. Quickly transfer the cod to the bowl with the club soda batter and toss to coat the fish on all sides. Press the batter into the fish and place it on a rack that has been placed on parchment paper. Continue until all fish pieces are breaded.
Drop a small stream of soda batter into the hot oil. If it sizzles vigorously, the oil is ready for frying. Gently add the cod pieces to the hot oil. Place them in a single layer and don’t overcrowd them or they won’t cook evenly. If necessary, work in batches. Let them fry for 2-3 minutes, flip and fry for another minute or two. Once the fish has reached a golden brown color, use a slotted spoon to carefully remove it to a foil-lined baking sheet fitted with a wire rack. They will be soft and can break if you are not careful. Put in the hot oven until all the pieces of fish are fried.
Serve hot with buttered rice and ramekins of tartar sauce.
Note: I use cod that is still slightly frozen. I find it easier to get a nice clean cut, plus it keeps the meat moist when frying. Take them out of the freezer 2 to 3 hours before frying them for best results.