Toons and Miles love these fish sticks, so I had to share the recipe! They’re so golden and crispy, you’d think they were fried, but NOPE – panko bread crumbs and a high-temperature bake give them the crunch we love so much. Pro tip: adding the paprika throughout the dip gives them that signature golden color you usually need to fry to achieve! Try to use the freshest fish you can, and if you’re buying it from a fish store, ask them to take the skin off.
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped dill pickles
- ¼ cup finely chopped sweet pickles
- 5 tablespoons finely chopped yellow onion
- 2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- ¾ teaspoon sweet paprika, plus more for seasoning
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more for seasoning
- Pinch finely ground black pepper
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- ⅔ cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more for baking sheet
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 pound thick whitefish fillets (like cod), cut into 1-inch by 3-inch strips
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Make the tartar sauce:
Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. (You can also make the tartar sauce while the fish sticks are in the oven, or make it the day before and keep it covered in the fridge until you’re ready to use it.)
Make the fish sticks:
Place the flour, ½ teaspoon of the paprika, ½ teaspoon salt and a pinch of pepper in a second bowl and whisk to combine.
Put the panko, Parm, remaining ¼ teaspoon paprika and vegetable oil in a shallow bowl and rub with fingers to make sure everything is well combined.
Place the eggs in a fourth bowl and season with paprika, salt and pepper to taste. Whisk to thoroughly combine.
Season the fish all over with a pinch of salt. One at a time, dip the fish into the flour mixture, then the egg mixture, then the panko-Parm mixture, pressing the panko firmly on all sides to adhere. Brush a foil-lined baking sheet with oil, then arrange the breaded fish on the sheet, leaving space in between so they brown nicely. Bake until crispy, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve with tartar sauce.