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Crispy-coated cod with roast squash and tomato sauce

by Sarah Randell

Serves: 4

We're on the hunt for the UK's Dishiest Dad. If you know a man who loves to cook, why not enter him into this year's competition? There are some fantastic prizes to be won!

Last year's Dishy Dads' champion was Will Boud, who cooked his way to victory with this tasty cod recipe. Why not try it for your fish supper this Friday?


  • For the tomato sauce: 1 x 335g pack cherry tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • ½ onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • ½ bulb fennel
  • 1 carrot, peeled
  • 200ml good vegetable stock
  • For the squash: 1.2kg squash, or a mix of squash and pumpkin, peeled
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • For the fish: 600g fillet of cod, haddock, coley or pollock
  • 50g seasoned plain flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 slices granary bread, whizzed into crumbs
  • finely chopped mixed herbs, such as parsley, coriander or fennel tops (optional)
  • For the pesto: 1 x 28g pack basil
  • 20g pine nuts
  • 1 clove garlic
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 50ml olive oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C, fan 200°C, gas 7.
  2. Halve the cherry tomatoes and place in a roasting tin, cut-side up. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the oil and sprinkle the sugar over them. Roast for about 20 minutes until slightly squidgy and caramelised.
  3. Meanwhile, chop the squash into large chunks and arrange in a large roasting tin. Drizzle with the oil and roast in the oven for 30 minutes until tender.
  4. While the squash is roasting, chop the onion, garlic, fennel and carrot and fry in a pan with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil until softened. Add the stock and simmer gently until needed.
  5. Remove the skin from the fish and cut into chunky pieces (allow around two pieces per person).
  6. Place the seasoned flour, beaten egg and breadcrumbs in separate bowls and stir the chopped herbs, if using, into the breadcrumbs.
  7. Coat each piece of fish in the flour, egg and finally the breadcrumbs.
  8. Take the tomatoes out of the oven and add to the vegetables in the pan. Blitz the mixture with a blender until smooth; leave to simmer.
  9. Place the fish on an oiled roasting tray and bake in the oven for 15 minutes, turning halfway through.
  10. When the fish is cooked, remove both the fish and squash from the oven.
  11. For the pesto, whiz the basil in a food processor with the pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil.
  12. Spoon a little of the tomato sauce on to each serving plate. Top with a small pile of squash, then the fish. Drizzle the pesto around the edge of the plate to serve.

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