Tunisian-Style Fried Fish and Vegetables

    1 hour 15 minutes

    This is a great way to serve inexpensive whitefish - fried and simmered in a sauce based on tomatoes, anise, lemon and olives. Serve over couscous.

    1 person made this

    Serves: 3 

    • 1 litre vegetable oil for frying
    • 400g whitefish, cut into bite-sized pieces
    • 1 egg
    • 1 tablespoon water
    • 2 cups dry bread crumbs
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 1 onion, halved and sliced
    • 1/2 green capsicum, cut into 5mm strips
    • 1/2 teaspoon anise seed
    • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
    • 2 roma tomatoes, chopped
    • 1 lemon wedge
    • 1 clove garlic, crushed
    • 1 cup (250ml) water
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • 1 pinch cayenne pepper
    • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
    • 1/2 cup olives
    • 1 cup (250ml) water

    Preparation:30min  ›  Cook:45min  ›  Ready in:1hour15min 

    1. Heat oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan to 190 degrees C.
    2. Beat the egg into a shallow bowl with a tablespoon of water. Place the bread crumbs in a shallow bowl. Dip the fish pieces into the beaten egg and then into the crumbs until well coated. Fry the fish nuggets in batches, about 1 minute on each side. Drain on paper towels and set aside.
    3. Heat the olive oil in a frypan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Stir in the onion and capsicum strips; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes.
    4. Coarsely crush the anise seed. Add the anise seed, tomato paste and chopped tomatoes to the frypan and cook, stirring frequently, until the tomato paste has darkened and the tomatoes have softened, about 5 minutes.
    5. Chop the lemon wedge, peel and all, into five pieces. Stir the lemon wedge and crushed garlic into the tomato mixture and cook for 1 minute more. Mix in 1 cup (250ml) water, salt and pepper, cayenne pepper, brown sugar and olives. Bring the sauce to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in more water if the sauce gets too thick. Gently stir in the fish nuggets, and simmer for an additional 10 minutes.

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