Tonight we had my version of Andy's childhood favorite—fish sticks. I used tilapia coated with buttermilk, egg, and a seasoned panko mixture. If you have tried panko, Japanese breadcrumbs, you must. (Look for them with the Asian foods on the international aisle of the grocery store.) They are super crispy and work well for oven-frying and regular frying. My tartar sauce is actually a combination of two flavors: the dill pickle tartar sauce from Seagrove Market (my favorite beach dive) and rémoulade sauce. It's tasty with fried shrimp as well.
1 lb. tilapia, cut into same-size pieces
1. Combine panko and next 4 ingredients into a shallow dish. Pour buttermilk into another shallow dish. Crack egg into a third shallow dish, and lightly beat.
2. Dip tilapia pieces in buttermilk, panko mixture, egg, and then again in panko; press panko onto surface of fish.
3. Pour oil to a depth of 2 inches into a Dutch oven. Once oil is hot, cook fish, in batches, for 4 minutes or until done. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Serve with Tartar Sauce.
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. country-style Dijon mustard
2 tsp. dill pickle relish
1 tsp. Wickle pickle relish
Lemon juice (optional)
1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a small bowl; stir in lemon juice, if desired.