It's Lent once again, and that means lots of vegetarian and pescatarian meals in the Pagano abode. My first low carb Lent offering this year is a very tasty, Cajun-seasoned, Parmesan-crusted fish, served over coleslaw mix with a creamy lime and garlic dressing.
Fish tacos are a pretty big thing right now; they usually consist of crispy breaded fish served over a sweet, lime-laced coleslaw in street taco shells. Now, taco salad is one of my all-time favorite meals, and so the obvious solution to lack of tortilla is to serve my keto breaded fish salad-style. Because I'm busy and always looking to simplify, I decided to make one dressing to rule them all instead of a lime dressing for the slaw and a separate remoulade to top.
The end result was a super filling and tasty Lenten Friday meal that gives the folks down at the parish fish fry a run for their money.
Notes: As per usual, breading is a bit of an inexact process. I gave the best estimates as to how much of each ingredient I used, but depending on how heavy-handed you are with your dredging you might need a little more or less. Hence, the coconut flour and Parmesan cheese measurements may not be dead on, and the macros are a little more of an estimate than usual. As long as the amount you use is fairly close, your macros should be mostly in line with mine.
Also, I'm aware that people either love cilantro or hate it, so I garnished my bowl with this bright and beautiful herb (but left it off my cilantro-loathing husband's), and listed it as an optional ingredient so you can customize to your own preference.
Some of the elements in this dish are inexact in measurements, due to the nature of breading. I will give my best estimates on how much will be used, but you may use a little more or less than the amounts I’ve suggested. As long as it’s close, the macros will be fairly consistent.
For the dressing:
- 1 c (8 fl oz/237 ml) sour cream
- zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp dried dill
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
For the fish:
- 1 lb (16 oz/ 454 g) catfish fillets (or your favorite white fish), sliced into 1″ chunks
- 2 tbsp (approx. 1/2 oz/ 14 g) coconut flour
- 1/2 c (approx. 1 3/4 oz/ 50 g) Parmesan cheese, finely grated
- 1 tsp Cajun seasoning, divided
- 1-2 eggs, large
- 1-2 tbsp heavy cream
- avocado oil to fry, enough to fill about 1/4″ of the bottom of a skillet
For the salad:
- 1 lb (16 oz/ 454 g) bag shredded coleslaw vegetables (raw cabbage mixture)
- 2 large radishes, rinsed well and thinly sliced
- 1 oz (57 g) red onion, thinly sliced into strips
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- cilantro to garnish, if desired
For the dressing:
- Mix all dressing ingredients well and refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to serve.
For the fish:
- In a wide, shallow bowl or on a plate, stir together the coconut flour and 1/2 tsp Cajun seasoning.
- In a wide, shallow bowl, mix together egg and heavy cream to make an egg wash.
- In a wide, shallow bowl stir together the Parmesan cheese and remaining Cajun seasoning.
- To bread the fish, dredge a piece lightly in the coconut flour. This will be a light dusting, so shake off any excess.
- Next, dip your fish piece into the egg wash and allow any excess to drip back into the bowl.
- Finally, dredge the fish in the Parmesan mixture, letting any excess shake back into the bowl, and set aside. Repeat with each piece of fish until it’s all breaded and let stand on a plate while you heat your oil.
- In a large skillet, heat avocado oil over medium-high until a drop of water pops and sizzles.
- Add a few pieces at a time to fry, being careful not to crowd the pan. Pan fry the first side for 3 minutes or so, or until the bottom is golden brown and solidified.
- Flip the fish and continue to fry on the second side until it is golden brown and uniform, and the fish is cooked through. This will not take long, as the smaller pieces of fish will cook through very quickly. If the breading starts browning too quickly, turn the heat down to medium and continue.
- Remove to drain on paper towels and repeat the frying process with the remaining fish in batches.
For the salad:
- Toss together all vegetables.
- Divide the mixed salad between six plates and top with equal portions hot fried fish and dressing to serve.
- Garnish with fresh cilantro, if desired.
Per serving: 252 cal, 19.9 g protein, 14.7 g fat, 10.8 g carbs, 2.9 g fiber, 7.9 g NET carbs
Keywords: lent, fish, fish fry, pescatarian, fish taco, taco salad