Whats for dinner tonight? How about my Panko Breaded Flounder?
I truly am spoiled living on the east coast, where so much great fresh seafood is available. And really lucky to have a Wegman’s to shop at with a great selection of reliable fresh seafood, much of which is sourced locally. So when I saw fresh flounder on display being hand filleted per order, I knew that would be the perfect choice for dinner.
While Lisa likes flounder simply broiled, or stuffed, my favorite way to eat flounder is fried. Crispy crunchy and fried till golden brown…..sigh.
The problem with frying these days is all the media attention and how bad everyone says it is for you…..it kind of takes all the fun out of eating fried foods! But I have found a solution to that problem! I’ve been using coconut oil for skillet frying, and its been working out really well! Okay, I know it’s still fried, but it certainly is a much healthier version of fried and remember with me it’s baby steps…
Growing up, my father used cracker meal for breading seafood, and I always enjoyed that type of light breading. But for the flounder, I was looking for something with a little more body and crunch to it. Regular bread crumbs just didn’t seem like a good option for me, and then I remembered the box of panko bread crumbs in the pantry! That was the perfect choice, it actually kept the flounder lighter, not absorbing as much of the cooking oil and added the wonderful crispy crunch that I was looking for!
For a side dish, I wanted a contrast to the light and flaky flounder and something with a stronger flavor. A more pronounced flavor would work to make the fish seem even more delicate and mild. Pasta is always my go-to side dish, and by adding in the bitter element of broccoli rabe, it did two things for my entree.
It added in the contrast of flavors I was looking for and helped mask any objectionable coconut flavor that may have lingered on the palate. I actually like the taste of Kelapo, but when you’re cooking for someone that doesn’t like coconut, you have to be creative or sneaky! Can I tell you Lisa had no idea I used coconut oil and even took the leftovers to school for her lunch the next day? That’s always a good sign. When Lisa packs up the leftovers for lunch, then she really enjoyed dinner and wasn’t just humoring me.
I think you do get used to flavors, and the more you use them preparing foods you love, the easier it becomes. I remember my first experience with olive oil when I was a teenager….I hated it! Then one day I dipped bread into a plate of seasoned olive oil and became an instant convert. I think over time Lisa will get used to the flavor and won’t even notice when I use it. It’s all about balancing flavors.
If you love seafood you might also like my Pan Seared Halibut.
Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
Good morning~I have featured this recipe on my blog for my weekly seafood round-up and have linked this recipe to your original post so that my readers will be forwarded to your site. Thank you for allowing me to share! Here is the link: http://carriesexperimentalkitchen.blogspot.com/2012/11/seafood-frenzy-friday-week-41.html
Mmm as far as flounder goes, I like it broiled, stuffed or fried. Really I just like the white flaky fish. This dish looks classic and I need to try some broccoli rabe too. Perfect weeknight supper.
wonderful Crispy crunchy and fried till golden brown. Yes I will try panko it should be better. Thank you chef
The colorful pasta dish and the golden color of the chicken made my hungry!
Reads and looks tasty. 🙂
We are spoiled living here on the east coast. Your meal looks fabulous!
Chef Dennis….no worry, eat everything in moderation 🙂 or it will take the fun out of eating. This dish looks simple and delicious . YUmmmy ! Have a great weekend !
Dana @ This Silly Girl's Life
This looks amazing, YUM!
Laura (Tutti Dolci)
I love using panko, this flounder looks scrumptious!
Delicious looking as always Dennis and we’ve got to look for the coconut oil as may favorite prep for most fish is fried. After 7 years living in South Jersey in my youth I know what you mean by being spoiled on fresh seafood.
As you, I’m taking baby steps with coconut oil. Recently picked up The Coconut Oil Miracle- very eye opening and reassuring that it is indeed healthier for you. Haven’t used the Kelapo brand yet but will look for it. I’ve been using coconut oil when making Thai food, which has been lots recently. Your fish dish with ‘more body and crunch’ will go great with a Thai side dish!
I use coconut oit often and once when I made popcorn with it my daughter asked what was that awful smell. Ha! and she likes coconut too just not the oil, I love them both. So now if I want the popcorn all to myself I just use coconut oil to pop it! 😉 Your flounder looks awsome!
Thanks for the Panko suggestion, Dennis… I’ve tried crumb coatings, bread crumbs, etc., too, but this sounds like the “crunch factor” I’ve been looking for. (And we have a lot of fish in the lake!) Delicious looking meal!
Lea Ann (Cooking on the Ranch)
What is cracker meal?
its finely ground up crackers Lea Ann, sort of like bread crumbs.
The Mom Chef ~ Taking on Magazines One Recipe at a Time
So, when do you want us over for dinner? This really does look fantastic. I love the idea of panko over bread crumbs as well. I’ve not yet tried broccoli rabe, but I’ll keep my eye out for it. I’m sure Dudette will love having a new green thing in her food. 🙂