Whiting wonders
  |  First Published: February 2013

The following recipes show how to prepare whiting in a variety of taste options. Why not have a whiting tasting platter and discover your favourite.

The following recipes can be used for whiting that is either filleted or butterflied.

Tempura Whiting

A light crisp coating of tempura batter adds a wonderful flavour to the whiting. It is a delightful mixture of texture and flavour.


1/2 cup plain flour

1/2 cup corn flour (or rice flour)

Pinch of salt

1 tsp baking powder

1 egg yolk

2/3 cup ice cold soda water or water

2-3 butterflied whiting (or 6 fillets) per person

Cooking oil


1. Thoroughly combine the plain flour, cornflour, salt and baking powder together in a medium-sized bowl. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients.

2. Lightly beat the egg yolk and add it to the well in the dry ingredients. Slowly add the ice-cold liquid, whisking gently as you pour. Continue to add the ice-cold liquid until the ingredients have reached a batter-like consistency. Depending on the flour, you may not need the whole amount of liquid. The batter will still be slightly lumpy at this stage.

3. Pour about a 2cm depth of cooking oil into a heavy-based frypan. Heat over a medium heat until the oil is hot.

To ensure the oil is at the correct temperature add a cube of bread to the hot oil. The bread should turn golden in about 30 seconds. You may need to adjust your temperature under the frypan a little to achieve this result.

4. To cook the whiting, dip the whiting on both sides into the tempura batter and place carefully into the hot oil. When the whiting fillet is golden on one side, turn it over and continue to fry until the other side is golden as well.

Salt and Pepper Whiting

1 tbsp freshly ground salt

2 tbsp crushed Szechwan pepper

1 cup cornflour

2-3 butterflied whiting (or 6 fillets) per person

Cooking oil


1. Combine the salt, pepper and cornflour in a shallow dish.

2. Heat a little cooking oil in a heavy-based frypan over a medium heat.

3. Gently pat the coating onto the whiting as you coat it with the salt and pepper mixture.

4. Now carefully place the whiting in the hot oil and cook on both sides until the whiting is just cooked through. Place the salt and pepper whiting on some paper towel and place to one side while you cook the remaining whiting.

Coconut Whiting

Shredded coconut is the key in this recipe because the texture of the shreds gives a great look to the whiting when they are fried. I have tried it with desiccated coconut and I definitely prefer the shredded coconut version.


2 cup Panko breadcrumbs

1 cup shredded coconut

3 eggs, lightly beaten

1 cup plain flour

2-3 butterflied whiting (or 6 whiting fillets) per person

Cooking oil


1. Combine the breadcrumbs and the shredded coconut together in a shallow bowl. Lightly beat the eggs and place them into a separate shallow bowl. Put the flour into another shallow bowl.

2. Pour the cooking oil into a heavy-based frypan to a depth of about 1-2cm. Heat the cooking oil over a medium heat until hot. The aim is to have the oil at a temperature that cooks the coating to a golden crunch without burning the coconut.

3. Coat each fillet in the flour, then dip into the egg and then generously coat the fish with the breadcrumb/coconut mixture. Continue until you have coated all of the whiting.

4. Carefully place the whiting into the hot oil and cook on both sides until golden brown. Drain the cooked fish on paper towel and place to one side while you cook the rest of the fish.

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