4 whitefish fillets, about 2 lb. (tilapia, grouper, etc.)
1 jar unsweetened applesauce
Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
extra virgin olive oil
splash of milk or heavy cream
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Make an egg wash with the eggs & cream, whisk well with a pinch of salt. Rinse & pat dry the fillets.
Dredge the fillets in the flour, dip in the eggs, & bread them.
Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over med-high heat, just before smoking, & sauté the breaded fillets quickly (2 at a time should fit in the pan). Brown the fillet on one side, then the other for just a second, then place on a baking sheet (second side down). No need to oil the pan, there should be plenty of residual oil left on the fish.
Once all the fillets are in the pan, place the fresh basil leaves on top of the fillets lengthwise. 2-3 per fillet depending on size.
With a small spoon, cover most of the fillets with the applesauce, leaving about ¼” edge. Then cover the applesauce with the parmesan cheese. The more the better if you love cheese.
Bake in the oven for about 12-15 minutes, depending on your oven. You’ll know it’s done when it’s good & flaky – check it with a fork.
Chef’s Note: Hint on the dredge: use one hand for the flour & the other for the eggs – a dry hand, wet hand kind of thing. Mix up the two & your fingers quickly quadruple in size. I find sautéed spinach & garlic mashed potatoes complement the dish well.