Pan-fried whiting with lemon and caper crumbs

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 4 people

  • 90 ml olive oil
  • 3 golden shallots, thinly sliced into rings
  • 1 lemon, juice only
  • 8 (about 80gm each) sand whiting fillets
  • For dusting: seasoned flour
  • 20 gm butter, coarsely chopped
  • To serve: green salad
  •  
  • Lemon and caper crumbs
  • 80 gm crustless day-old sourdough bread, coarsely torn
  • 80 ml (1/3 cup) olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • 30 gm salted capers, rinsed and squeezed
  • 2 lemons, finely grated rind only
  • 2 tbsp thyme leaves
01   For crumbs, process bread in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. Set aside. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium heat, add garlic and capers and cook, stirring, until capers are crisp (about 3 minutes). Add crumbs to pan and cook, stirring, until crisp (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat and season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stir through lemon rind and thyme and set aside.
02   Wipe out pan with absorbent paper. Return to heat, add 30ml oil and shallot and cook, stirring occasionally, until softening (about 5 minutes). Add lemon juice and cook until evaporated (about 2 minutes), season to taste, transfer to a bowl and keep warm.
03   Lightly dust fish in seasoned flour, shaking off excess. Wipe out pan again, add 30ml olive oil and half the butter, and heat until butter foams. Add half the fish to pan, skin-side down, and cook until golden (about 2 minutes). Turn and cook for another minute, then transfer to a plate and keep warm. Repeat with remaining butter, oil and fish. Serve with shallots scattered with the crumbs, and a green salad to the side.
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