Sometimes you just have a craving for something that tastes familiar, which might have been your first introduction to a type of food. For many people, fried fish is one such introduction to seafood. A staple on many restaurant menus, you can’t go wrong with an order of fish and chips. Unless, of course, it’s soggy, greasy and not fresh. Here are some tips on frying fish to ensure that if you are going to go through the slightly messy trouble of making deep-fried fish, it’s gonna be great. First, get yourself some nice, fresh fish. Second: ensure that your fresh canola oil is at the right temperature: If your oil is too hot, then the fish will brown too quickly and not get cooked evenly on the inside. If the oil is too cold, then it will absorb the oil and become soggy.
Finally, try to eat as soon as possible, and don’t allow your pieces to touch together once removed from the fryer or they will steam and become soggy.
Make batter: in a bowl blend together flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, and paprika;
Whisk in beer to get a thick, pancake-like consistency;
Cut fish into approximately 4-oz portions (about the size of two thumbs); pat dry;
Fill a wide pot with about 3 inches of canola oil, and set over medium-high heat (or set your deep-fryer to 350°F). Bring oil up to 350°F: you can test this using a deep-fry thermometer, or, if a cube of bread fried in the oil turns golden brown in about 15 seconds;
To batter fish: dip fish into batter, using tongs or your fingers, immersing the fish. Lift fish out of batter, letting excess batter drip off;
To fry fish, dip one end of the fish into the hot oil, and sway it back and forth, slowly immersing the whole piece in the oil. Gently let go of the piece of fish so that the fish is now floating in the hot oil. Continue with 2-4 pieces, careful not to overcrowd the pot;
Fry on one side until golden, and then flip over and continue to cook on the other side until deep golden in colour. Once fish is done, remove and place on paper-towel-lined baking sheets or on a cooling rack; sprinkle lightly with salt.
Beer Battered Fish
- 1 c. all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1 beer, any kind
- 1-1/4 lb cod, haddock or halibut
- Canola oil, for deep frying
- Lemon wedges, for serving