I’m a huge fan of fish, and while I would normally opt for an oily fish like salmon for dinner, this mild cod fillet is truly great over potatoes with green vegetables. Cod has several advantages over the fish: it’s cheaper, it’s easy to cook and cooks quickly, and it appeals to your friends and family who aren’t quite as into seafood.
These horseradish and goat cheese smash potatoes might sound aggressive, but they’re softer than you think, especially after they’re mixing in with some leeks sautéed in butter. This creates a luscious, fluffy side dish that stays hearty. While I chose to serve green beans on the side, feel free to cook your favorite bitter winter green directly into your potatoes!
For the Cod:
2, 5 oz cod fillets
1/4 cup all purpose flour
3 tbsp panko or cornmeal
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp lemon-pepper
1 tsp paprika
For the Potatoes:
1 leek, roughly chopped and cleaned thoroughly
2 tbsp butter, softened
1-2lbs Yukon gold potatoes
1/4 cup half-and-half or non-dairy milk
4 garlic cloves, sliced
2 tbsp horseradish
1/4 cup goat cheese crumbles
For the Tomato Sauce:
2-3 roma tomatoes, halved
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp half-and-half
1 tsp smoked paprkia
1 garlic clove, minced
- Preheat oven to 400º. Half tomatoes and place on a baking sheet, drizzled with oil. When oven reaches temperature, roast for about 30 minutes or until soft.
- Add potatoes to a medium sized pot and cover with water. Add a generous portion of salt to the water, and bring to a boil. Boil until potatoes are falling apart, about 25-30 minutes.
- Add flour, panko, and seasonings to a paper bag or to-go container. Add cod fillets to the bag and shake gently, coating the fish in a very light breading. Shake and excess flour off the fillets and set aside.
- In a medium non-stick skillet, heat 1 tsp oil over medium high heat. When pan is hot, add cod fillets and cook for about 2 minutes on both sides, but do not cook it all the way through. When both sides are browned, remove cod to a baking sheet.
- When tomatoes are done roasting, set arise. Add cod to the oven at 400º and bake for 10 minutes or until flakey and cooked through.
- Meanwhile, melt 1 tbsp butter in a large sautée pan. Once melted, add chopped leeks to the pan. (NOTE: Be sure to thoroughly clean your leeks before cooking to ensure that all grit has been removed from the plant.)
- Sautée leeks over medium heat until soft, about 2-3 minutes. Add garlic to the pan and stir constantly to avoid any possibility of garlic burning.
- Once potatoes are soft, add them directly to the pan with he leeks. Using a potato smasher or a large spoon, smash potatoes into the leeks, garlic and butter. Stir in half-and-half, horseradish, and goat cheese. Feel free to add more butter and half and half if you want your potatoes creamier!
- While potatoes and cod are finishing, combine tomatoes in a blender or food processor with olive oil, half-and-half, paprika, salt, pepper, and 1 finely minced clove of garlic. Process on high unit smooth. Pass tomato mixture through a fine strainer to remove any leftover solids and set aside.
- Once cod has cooked through, remove from oven and allow to cool slightly. Spoon potatoes into the center of a large plate. Rest one cod fillet over the potatoes and spoon tomato sauce over the top of the fish. Sprinkle with extra salt and pepper if desired.
Serve with chopped parsley and lemon over the fish. Perfectly suited to be eaten by itself or served alongside green vegetables, paired with a glass of crisp white wine.