This is one of those recipes that came about from not having the right ingredients in the pantry and needing to improvise. After purchasing some gorgeous fresh fillets of flathead from our local seafood supplier on the coast, I had decided to coat the fillets in flour and fry them. However, after a hunt through the pantry, the only flour I found was a small amount of buckwheat flour. Fortunately, I also found a tub of puffed amaranth (left over from making a gluten-free muesli), which I decided would work a treat.
Flathead is perfect for deep-frying, especially when battered — it’s moist, flaky and delicious. Saying that, I never deep-fry at home; rather, I stick to shallow-frying because it is healthier, cleaner and easier.
The fish was tasty and the crust crunchy, providing the perfect gluten-free coating to encase the fillets and keep the flesh succulent. I served the fish with some freshly dug potatoes, which I cooked until golden and crispy.
The potatoes grew from potato seed, originally gifted to us by Dale, a potato grower from Canungra — one of the featured farmers in our latest cookbook, EAT LOCAL. We planted the seed potatoes nearly a year ago and had a bumper crop about six months later. Then, a couple of weeks ago, I was digging the raised bed to plant some summer vegies and found these random Sebago potatoes — bonus!
I hope you enjoy this recipe.
Amaranth-crusted flathead fillets and roasted Sebago potatoes
gluten-free | dairy-free | wheat-free
Roasted Sebago potatoes
300 g Sebago potatoes, peeled and washed
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Amaranth-crusted flathead fillets
1 cup puffed amaranth (available at health food shops)
1 handful hard herbs (rosemary, sage, thyme or a mix), finely chopped
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons buckwheat or brown rice flour
3 fillets of flathead (around 400 g), cut in half lengthways
Olive oil for frying fish
Preheat the oven to 200°. Place the potatoes in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring potatoes to the boil and cook for 10–15 minutes or until they are just-soft. Tip the potatoes into a colander to cool for 5 minutes. Place the potatoes in a bowl and add the seasoning and oil, then toss the potatoes well so they are coated thoroughly. Tip the potatoes into a roasting pan and roast for 20 minutes. Remove the hot pan from the oven, toss the potatoes, return the pan to the oven and roast for a further 20 minutes or until golden.
To cook the fish, place the amaranth, herbs and seasoning in a bowl and mix together thoroughly, then spread on a dinner plate. Place the beaten egg and flour in separate wide-mouthed bowls. Dry the fish well between sheets of paper towel. Coat the fish strips in flour and shake off the excess. Coat the fillets in egg and then coat with the puffed amaranth mix. Heat a cast iron skillet and add one cup of olive oil. The oil is ready when it has reached 170°. Check the oil is hot enough by dropping in some of the puffed amaranth — if it sizzles, it’s ready. Cook the fillets for 4 minutes and then turn and cook for a further 2 minutes. Drain on sheets of kitchen paper. Serve the fish and potatoes with sea salt, mayonnaise and fresh lemon wedges.