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Jamie Oliver's 30 Minute Meals: Tasty Crusted Cod recipe

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A grown-up take on fish fingers, mash and peas, with homemade tartare sauce. The topping for the fish is full of umami flavours. This is probably my favourite Jamie Oliver 30 Minute Meal.

  • Prep25m
  • Cook20m
  • Total45m


I’ve cooked this dish with frozen skinless cod fillets (defrosted first) and they tasted great as well as being more cost effective.

Inspired by a childhood favourite of fish fingers and mash, this 30 Minute Meal of crusted cod, mashy peas and tartare sauce is gorgeous and I’d highly recommended it.

As with the 30 Minute Asian Style Salmon this may not be a dish to cook if you’re feeling frugal. The cod ideally needs to come from a fishmonger and it’s quite expensive to buy 1.2kg of fillets (see the update, frozen fish is fine). Having said that, I firmly believe it’s worthwhile as the cod is by far the star of the meal with its crispy breadcrumb topping and punchy tomato sauce. It is indeed a giant, fancy fish finger and a great pleasure to eat.


A food processor is used a lot throughout the preparation and is essential if you want to stick to the 30 minute time frame.

The quantities of potatoes, broccoli and peas makes loads of mash but it freezes well.

Recipe credit

30 Minute Meals (affiliate link) by Jamie Oliver.


Jamie Oliver's 30 Minute Meals: Tasty Crusted Cod

  • Prep25m
  • Cook20m
  • Total45m
Serves: 4


Tasty Crusted Cod

  • olive oil
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • salt and pepper
  • 1200g (2 x 600g) cod fillets, skin on
  • 200g crusty white bread
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • ½ tin anchovies in oil
  • ½ a 280g jar sun-dried tomatoes in oil
  • 1 red chilli
  • 40g Parmesan cheese
  • small bunch basil
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary (or a small pinch of dried)
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme (or a small pinch of dried)

Mashy peas

  • 4 medium baking potatoes
  • 1 head broccoli
  • 500g frozen peas
  • knob butter
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1-2 tbsp mint sauce

Tartare Sauce

  • 3 gherkins
  • 1 tsp capers
  • small bunch parsley
  • ½ tin anchovies in oil
  • 1 lemon
  • 200g mayonnaise
  • a pinch of sweet paprika


This recipe requires a food processor.

  1. Turn the grill on to a high heat and fill and boil the kettle.
  2. Mashy peas: Chop 4 medium baking potatoes into 2cm chunks (no need to peel) and place into a large saucepan on a medium heat. Add salt and cover the potatoes with the boiled water from the kettle then cover with a lid.
  3. Trim the end from 1 head of broccoli then separate the florets from the stalk. Place the florets to one side then chop the stalk into 2cm chunks and add to the saucepan with the potatoes.
  4. Cod: Drizzle some 1 teaspoon of olive oil  into a large roasting tray or ovenproof dish that will accommodate the cod. Add 1 teaspoon of fennel seeds, salt and pepper into the dish then coat 2 x 600g of cod fillets in the oily mixture. Place the fillets skin side down then put the dish under the grill on the bottom shelf in your oven so that the top doesn't cook too quickly (around 5 minutes).
  5. Break 200g of crusty bread into chunks and place in a food processor or blender. Crush in 2 cloves of garlic and some of the olive oil from a tin of anchovies. Process until you have coarse breadcrumbs then tip into a bowl.
  6. Place half of the anchovy fillets (from a 50g tin) into the food processor then add 280g of sun-dried tomatoes and a little of their oil. Add the other 2 cloves of garlic, 1 chilli, 40g of Parmesan and a small bunch of basil. Grate in the zest from 1 lemon and squeeze in the juice. Add 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar then process until you have a thick sauce.
  7. Remove the fish from under the grill and spread the tomato sauce over the top of the fillets then finish with the breadcrumbs. Top with 2 sprigs of rosemary and 2 sprigs of thyme then place back under the grill until the breadcrumbs have turned golden brown (around 10 minutes).
  8. Mashy peas: By now the potatoes should be soft so add the broccoli florets and 500g of frozen peas into the saucepan then cover with a lid. Cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  9. Tartare sauce: Rinse out the food processor then add 3 gherkins, 1 teaspoon of capers, a small bunch of parsley and the remaining anchovies and their oil. Squeeze in the juice from half a lemon and drizzle in some olive oil. Process until smooth then transfer into a bowl and mix in 200g of mayonnaise. Taste and add more lemon juice if required then sprinkle over a pinch of sweet paprika.
  10. Mashy peas: Drain the potatoes/vegetables and leave in a colander for a few minutes to allow all of the water to evaporate then transfer back into the saucepan. Add a knob of butter, a drizzle of olive oil, salt, pepper and 1-2 tablespoons of mint sauce then roughly mash everything.
  11. Cod: The fish should be cooked by now so remove it from the grill and take it to the table along with the mash and tartare sauce. Serve with a lemon wedge and chilled white wine.

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