Very Best Beer Battered Fish
I love how no sooner has the Fast gone out, and you've brushed the last cinnamon babka crumbs from your lips, that you become aware of the tapping of hammers as late-night, sukka building commences. While I adore the atmosphere of Succoth, and the week-long socializing it entails, the daily over-indulgence can be overwhelming. It's at times like this that light 'n luscious fish and spectacular salad recipes are put to best use, and it's especially now that I'm so grateful Meatland carries hard-to-find, South African hake. South African hake, for those who don't know, is sold in Sunfish packaging but comes in directly from famous fishery I&J in Cape Town. Unlike other locally sold products which contain up to 20% water, and have the consistency of sodden kitchen towel, hake is 100% fish, with a firm texture and clean, decidedly unfishy taste. It can be baked or grilled with ease - and I'll gladly share my favorite recipe in an upcoming newsletter - but beer battering and frying produces the ultimate, English pub style, fried fish. Pick up a can of beer when next you're stocking up and put 'hake from Meatland' at the very top of your shopping list. It's a lighter and more economical, is delicious served hot or cold, and this frequently tried 'n tested recipe delivers stellar results.
1 x 340 ml can cold beer (see notes) 1/4 cup (60 ml) cornflour 1 cup (250 ml) plain flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon turmeric (optional but gives great color) Salt and pepper to taste Canola oil for frying 700 grams hake/ similar white fish Flour for coating fish seasoned with salt & pepper 1: Cut defrosted fish into large pieces or strips, coat in seasoned flour, and set aside. 2: Sift dry ingredients together, add beer and whisk to make a batter consistency, then allow to stand for 15 minutes to thicken. 3: Heat a generous amount of oil in a non-stick frying pan, dip floured fish pieces into batter, and fry in hot oil for approximately 3 minutes on each side or until golden and cooked through. 4: Drain on paper towels and serve with tartar sauce (at Meatland) and roast potato wedges. COOK'S NOTES: Soda water can replace beer though beer is my first choice. This batter can also be used for fried, battered onion rings. Don't over-crowd the pan as this will bring down the temperature of the oil and result in soggy fish. Rather fry 2 to 3 pieces at a time. Recipe serves approximately 4 if fish is cut into single pieces but stretches even further if cut into fingers to make battered fish strips.