For the Cilantro-Jalapeño Tartar Sauce:
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons pickled jalapeño slices, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
For the Fish Sticks:
3/4 teaspoon ground chipotle chile
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds cod fillet, cut crosswise into 3/4-inch wide strips
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
3 cups panko breadcrumbs
3/4 cup canola oil, divided
For the sauce:
- Combine the mayonnaise, jalapeño, cilantro, and relish in a bowl.
For the fish sticks:
- Combine the ground chipotle, cumin, garlic powder, 3/4 teaspoon of the salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Season the cod with the spice mixture.
- Place the flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs in 3 separate shallow bowls. Working with one piece of cod at a time, dredge the fish in flour, shaking off any excess. Coat with egg, allowing excess to drip back into the bowl. Coat with panko, pressing gently to help the breadcrumbs stick. Place on a sheet pan and repeat with remaining cod.
- Preheat the oven to 200°F.
- Heat 1/2 cup of the oil in a 12-inch over medium-high heat. Add 1/3 of the fish sticks and cook, turning occasionally, until golden and the fish is cooked through, 6 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a sheet pan lined with paper towels and keep warm in the oven. Add 1/4 cup of the oil to the skillet and repeat with 1/3 of the fish sticks; transfer to the sheet pan in the oven. Heat the remaining 1/4 cup oil and repeat with the remaining fish sticks. Sprinkle the cooked fish sticks with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt and serve with the tartar sauce.