Pan Fried Pickerel Cheeks with Lime Basils

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Pickerel CheeksJuly 26, 2010 Update: This post was featured on FoodBuzz Top 9 today

Pickerel is actually a name for Walleye (Sander vitreus, formerly Stizostedion vitreum).  In wikipedia, it’s explained that Walleye (Yellow Pickerel) is a freshwater perciform fish native to most of Canada and to the northern United States. It is a North American close relative of the European pikeperch.

Damn for sure I had no idea what perciform was until I followed through the link from wikipedia. Perciformes means perch-like.

This dish is the fruit of my love to Canadian and Indonesian ingredients, pickerel and lime basil (Indonesian: kemangi). The cheeks of pickerel are large enough to use. They are boneless, skinless and considered a delicacy in this province.

Speaking about lime basil, it is an Indonesian favourite of basil. We often eat it raw with sambal. It’s also flavouring the pepes (steamed/grilled fish or chicken wrapped in banana leaves), gulai (curry) and stir fry.

Since lemon basils are not common to be purchased at groceries, I have to grow them. Luckily, most of nurseries in Manitoba sell the plants of lime basil.

In this recipe, I substituted the buttermilk and flour for almond milk and rice flour. Instead of butter for pan frying, I used mix EV coconut and olive oil.

Wait! Did I say recipe? Honestly, no exact measurement of ingredients will be written. It will be just ingredients and how to make it.

Pan Fried Pickerel Cheeks with Lime Basils

recipe by me

Ingredients:
pickerel cheeks
lime basils, finely chopped
chili flakes
salt
ground black pepper
rice flour
almond milk
mix EV coconut and olive oil

Directions:
Combine rice flour, chili flakes, lemon basil salt and pepper. Dip pickerel cheeks into almond milk and dredge in flour mixture. Put a shallow skillet over medium-high heat, add oil and get the skillet hot. Add the cheeks and cook until browned on 1 side, 1 to 2 minutes. Flip the fish and continue to cook until desired doneness, about 2 minutes more. Be careful, it’s very easy to overcook.

Enjoy with your favourite sauce. This time, I dipped them into sweet chili sauce.

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About the Author

An Indonesian-born who lived in Winnipeg Edmonton, Canada for more than a decade prior to move to Edmonton in 2017. Indonesia Eats is a memoir of her homeland.