This dish was a wonderful result of me realizing we didn't have a ton of food in the fridge and I needed to make dinner. As an avid fan of Chopped on Food Network, I created my own Chopped Challenge and tried to create a dish from almost wilted kale, frozen cod filets and jasmine rice. The result was delicious!! Enjoy!
Cod Filets (I only had 2 left, feel free to use more)
All Purpose Flour
Seasoned Bread Crumbs
1 Egg, beaten
Jasmine Rice (amount according to your liking, refer to package instructions)
Chicken or Veggie Broth (optional)
1 pinch Saffron Threads
1 Bunch Green Kale, leaves removed from stems and ripped into smaller pieces
1/2 Cup Mayo
1 Tbsp Capers
1 Clove Crushed Garlic
2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Cup Vegetable Oil
Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder, Cayenne to taste
First and foremost, if you're using frozen fish, please thaw and get that fish as dry as possible. Frozen fish ends up retaining a ton of water and as a result, wont crisp up the way it deserves to with this dish. My cod was previously frozen, I thawed it and then let it drain on some paper towels, I switched out the paper towels for new dry ones a couple of times to ensure enough moisture got released.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a bowl, toss the kale in 2 tbsp of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to your liking. If you're into heat, add a sprinkle of cayenne. Toss to coat evenly and spread out on baking sheet lined with parchment paper in an even layer. Bake for 20 minutes. At the 20 minute mark check to ensure your kale is crispy, if it needs to cook longer, do so checking back frequently. You want it to be crispy, not burnt. Once its cooked through, remove from oven and set aside.
While the kale is baking, cook your rice according to package instructions. For some added flavor, I suggest cooking the rice in chicken or vegetable stock instead of water. In the final five minutes of cook time, sprinkle in your saffron and gently mix.
Once fish is dry. Grab three bowls, add all purpose flour to one (enough to just cover the bottom of the bowl, add seasoned breadcrumbs to another (same deal), add 1 beaten egg to the third. Heat 1/2 cup of vegetable oil over medium high heat in a large sauce pan. While the oil is heating up, season the cod to your liking with salt, pepper, garlic powder and paprika. The oil is hot enough when a sprinkle of flour sizzles in the pan. Take one piece of cod and lightly coat in all purpose flour, dip the same piece of cod in the egg and lightly coat, lastly dip in breadcrumbs so fish is fully covered. Gently add to the pan. Repeat with the rest of the fish, careful not to crowd the pan. Let cod cook for 5 minutes, rotating 180 degrees halfway through for even browing. If its browning too quickly, lower the heat. Gently flip and cook for another five minutes, lowering heat to medium low, again rotating 180 degrees halfway through.
While cod is cooking, create your aioli. In a small bowl mix together mayo, garlic, capers, dijon and lemon. Set aside.
Give your rice one final mix and fluff and assemble your plate. I started with a couple spoonfuls of rice, topped with fish straight from the pan. Add your kale chips to the side along with your aioli in a separate bowl or ramekin. Enjoy!