There is a nearby local restaurant called Leftovers that has a very unique (and delicious) menu. It’s one of those places that I have yet to try something that I haven’t liked!
They have this phenomenal sweet potato crusted fish that I L.O.V.E.! However, at a bank breaking $26-30 bucks a pop (depending on the type of fish you select), it’s not a meal I get to eat often. I have a really hard time justifying spending $30 bucks on ONE plate. Unless it’s a special occasion, I just can’t do it.
I decided it was time to figure out a way to recreate this dish at home (and on the cheap)! Sometimes the at-home re-creations of our favorite meals are pretty close, but not quite as good as the real thing (you know what I’m talking about!).
Well, my friends, I am happy to say I have actually done it! This dish is JUST as good, if not – dare I say it - BETTER! The hubs and I took one bite, looked at each other, and said “Holy cow!” followed by, ”Oh my gosh!” and then ”WOW!” We had a difficult time speaking in complete sentences after that! haha
We served this over a salad of mixed greens with crumbled goat cheese, blanched green beans (still has some crunch to it), black beans, and tomatoes. We then drizzled the vinaigrette over everything. WOW.
You could also serve the fish with a side of coconut rice and Plantains (or beans n’ rice). Whatever your little heart desires! But please be sure to make the vinaigrette and use it as a sauce if even if you don’t serve this on top of a salad! The tangy lime dressing with the sweet crusted fish is a match made in Heaven!
Note: I used a cast iron skillet which I think got a bit TOO hot (as you can see by the extra dark brown parts!). Thankfully I pulled it off just in the nick of time, it didn’t taste burned at all. It’s okay to have some dark spots (they always do at the restaurant… I think it’s the natural sugars in the sweet potato). I may use a non-stick next time!
Sweet Potato Crusted Fish with Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette
Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette (Yields: 1/2 cup):
1 cup cilantro - packed
1 medium clove garlic
2 limes- juiced (about 1/4 cup)
1/2 cup light olive oil
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
pinch of sugar (1/2 tsp)
1 pound mild flaky fish (Dolphin, Tilapia, Grouper, Snapper, Halibut etc)
2 medium sized sweet potatoes, peeled and shredded
1 egg plus 2 egg whites
1/2 cup flour - seasoned with a little salt & pepper
2 TBS canola oil (or any light oil)
2 TBS butter
2-4 oz Goat Cheese
1 cup fresh green beans, blanched
Handfull of Grape or Cherry Tomatoes
Black beans, drained and rinsed
Combine vinaigrette ingredients into a food processor, mini chopper, or blender and pulse until well combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.
If serving over salad, prepare salad now so it is ready to go.
Add flour to a pie plate (or any dish with sides) and season with salt and pepper. In another one, whisk together 1 egg plus 2 egg whites.
Preheat oven to 375°. Heat a large oven-safe skillet over medium to medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of butter plus 1 tablespoon oil (you may need extra if it's a large skillet - you want the entire bottom coated). Allow this to heat up.
Eyeball the size / shape of the pieces of fish and then, add a thin layer of shredded sweet potatoes about the same size & shape (one for each piece of fish).
Quickly dredge the fish into flour mixture, then egg wash, and set on top of the sweet potatoes in the pan. Repeat with each piece of fish. Cook for about 4 minutes (the fish should have a nice golden crust), lift fish out of pan with a spatula.
While holding fish with the spatula, add another thin layer of the shredded sweet potatoes to the pan (again matching the size of your fish filet). Carefully flip the fish onto the new "bed" of shedded sweet potatoes. Place entire skillet into the oven and allow to finish cooking (about 4-7 minutes depending on fish size).
The fish doesn't dry out due to the natural moisture in the potatoes! When fish is fully cooked (opaque in color), remove from oven and immediately serve over mixed salad. Top with cilantro lime vinaigrette.