Grabbing the Gusto

Deirdre Reid – Freelance Writer & Home Cook

A quick and flexible dinner recipe — top cod fillets with a pistachio-breadcrumb coating or try a different fish with a different nut coating.


The last time I served this pistachio-crumb cod for dinner, Jim said, “You really have a thing for cod, don’t you?” Guilty.

I bought two large fillets of cod on sale. One was enough for dinner for the two of us. The other fillet will be my lunch for several days – small pieces of cod with lettuce, in between sandwich thins, with a bit of cheese, maybe some mayonnaise too. My version of McDonald’s Filet-O-Fish. I’d eat that for breakfast. And I have. Yup, I have a thing for cod.

You don’t have to use pistachios for this recipe, although you’d miss out on the flecks of pretty green in the coating. You could substitute walnuts or pecans. And if cod isn’t available, any hearty fish, like salmon, halibut, snapper, or even the ubiquitous tilapia would work.

Cod with Pistachio-Crumb Coating recipe| Grabbing the Gusto

Cod with Pistachio-Crumb Coating | Grabbing the Gusto

Cod with Pistachio-Crumb Coating

You’ll need a baking sheet and shallow bowl.

  • Cooking spray
  • 1/2 cup shelled pistachios, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cod fillets (4 to 6 oz. each)
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise (or Dijon mustard)

Preheat oven to 425 F. Line a baking sheet with greased (or sprayed) foil.

Combine the nuts, breadcrumbs, Parmesan, salt, and pepper in a shallow bowl. Drizzle them with olive oil, then toss it all together with a fork until the crumbs are evenly moistened by the oil.

If you’re using fillets with tapered ends, loosely fold the ends under to create a fillet of even thickness. Spread the top of each fillet with the mayo. Press the mayo-coated side of each fillet into the crumb mixture to generously coat the fish. Place the fillets, coating side up, on the prepared pan. Sprinkle the remaining crumb mixture over the fillets.

Bake the fillets until the topping is crisp and browned, the fish is opaque and cooked through, and the flakes are easily separated, 10 to 12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillets.

Original recipe: Pistachio Crusted Cod Fillets, Fine Cooking, March 2002

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