Serious Eats

Dinner Tonight: Crispy Fish with Charred Corn and Sun Gold Salsa

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[Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger]

As you may have noticed from my previous Dinner Tonight posts, I have something of an infatuation with little tomatoes. And I hate to break it to you, but as long as they're still sweet and in season, I'm going to continue buying them by the basket. Plus, coming up with tasty meals using them is easy. It doesn't really matter what they're combined with—the result will undoubtedly be redolent of summer.

But Sun Golds don't always have to hog the spotlight. Instead of cooking them, I left them raw for this simple salsa, so I could focus my attention on another essential summer ingredient: sweet corn. Following Kenji's method for easily charring corn in a non-stick skillet, I created a salsa that's smoky, crunchy, and, thanks to some jalapeƱos, spicy. Sounds great, right? But though I've tried before, man can't live on salsa alone.

Considering how great fried chips go with salsa, I hit on the idea of serving the corn salsa with crispy fried fish. I mentally went through a list of all kinds of batters and bread crumb options, but none sounded right, because I wanted to avoid dirtying up the whole kitchen. Fortunately, I came across a technique in Rick Bayless's Authentic Mexican that couldn't be much simpler. Fish fillets are sprinkled with salt and lime and set aside for 30 minutes. Once dried on some paper towels, they need only to be tossed in flour, then pan-fried in a mixture of butter and oil. They come out of the pan with a thin and crispy crust, with no heavy breading to get in the way.

All you need to do is heap some salsa on top and dig in.

About the author: Nick Kindelsperger is the editor of Serious Eats: Chicago. He loves tacos and spicy food. You can follow him as @nickdk on Twitter.

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