Spicy Rockfish Bites with Mango Honey Mustard Sauce

Rockfish shines in these spicy fish croquettes with pasilla peppers, served with a mango honey mustard dipping sauce. It...

Rockfish shines in these spicy fish croquettes with pasilla peppers, served with a mango honey mustard dipping sauce. It makes a great appetizer for a dinner party or as part of a fun fish fry.


For the rockfish:

  • 1 Pound rockfish
  • 1 Tablespoon parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 Teaspoon thyme, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3/4 Cups Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 Cups panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 Teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 pasilla pepper
  • 2-3 Cups vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1/2 Cup flour

For the mango honey mustard dipping sauce:

  • 1 mango
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 Cup Dijon mustard


For the rockfish:

Cut rockfish into 2-inch chunks and place into a food processor. Give the fish a few pulses in the food processor and remember to scrape down the side into a bowl. Remove fish and put into a bowl.

Chop the herbs very fine and crush the garlic. Add the herbs, garlic, Parmigiano-Reggiano, eggs, panko bread crumbs, salt, and peppers into the food processor. Pulse for a minute or two until combined. Add ingredients to the bowl with the rockfish and combine. Take about a spoon full amount and roll in your hands to form the ball. Roll in the flour to evenly coat the outside. Be sure to do them all before you start to fry, as they will cook very fast. You can place them on a parchment paper so they don’t stick as they await their turn in the hot oil.

Heat your oil on a medium/high heat and fry these for about 5 minutes. Turn bites in oil, making sure they cook evenly.

For the mango honey mustard dipping sauce:

While the rockfish bites cook, make dipping sauce by adding 1 chopped mango, 1 tablespoon honey, and half cup Dijon mustard to food processor. Purée ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Serve fish balls with sauce.

Rockfish Shopping Tip

A fresh fish should not smell fishy nor have milky, opaque eyes; it should have bright red gills, firm flesh, and a tight anal cavity.

Rockfish Cooking Tip

Whole fish should be stored upright in ice in the refrigerator.

Rockfish Wine Pairing

Most white wines (especially albariño) and rosé with most fish dishes. Muscadet, sancerre, or New Zealand sauvignon blanc with cold fish dishes; chardonnay, pinot gris/grigio, or pinot blanc with grilled or roasted fish; sauvignon blanc or gewürztraminer with baked fish; grüner veltliner with fish pâté; vintage or non-vintage champagne or sparkling wine with light fish dishes; fino or manzanilla with small fried fish; junmai, junmai-ginjo, or junmai-daiginjo with teriyaki fish.