Seed-crusted Catfish

Menu Part: 
Cuisine Type: 

Slices of catfish fillet, pressed into a spicy sesame seed mixture. Served on lentil puree and topped with mango raita.


4 1⁄2 lb. catfish fillets (about 12)
1 cup seed & spice blend (recipe follows)
Olive oil, as needed
4 1⁄2 cups spicy lentil puree
2 1⁄4 cups mango raita
Lemon wedges and cilantro sprigs, optional

Seed & Spice Blend:

1⁄4 cup coriander seed
2 tbsp. fennel seed
11⁄2 tsp. cumin seed
1 tbsp. chile pepper, crushed
1 tsp. ground cardamom
1 tsp. fenugreek seed
3 star anise
1⁄4 cup turbinado sugar
1⁄4 cup sesame seeds, toasted
1 tbsp. kosher salt
11⁄2 tsp. black pepper, cracked


1. Preheat oven to 300°F. Cut catfish fillets into 1-oz. pieces. Place seed & spice blend in a shallow pan; press into flesh side of fillets.

2. Heat a little oil in a nonstick pan. Cook catfish, seed-side down, until golden; turn fillets and cook to seal. Trans__fer catfish to baking sheet; finish cooking in oven.

3. For service, place fish on lentil puree; top with mango raita; garnish with lemon wedges and cilantro sprigs.

Seed & Spice Blend:

1. Lightly toast coriander, fennel, and cumin seeds; coarsely grind and transfer to a bowl.

2. Grind chile, cardamom, fenugreek, and star anise into a fine powder. Stir into toasted spices; add sugar, sesame seeds, salt, and pepper.

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