This is the one time of the year that I crave Beer Battered Fish & Chips.
Every Friday night, during the Lenten season, my family and I would we would head down to the local high school or event center for dinner.
This is where you could find a fundraising Fish Fry meal that was large enough to feed a huge crowd.
The locals would surround the cafeteria tables eating beer battered fish and hot french fries while catching up on the neighborhood news.
Squeeze bottles of tartar sauce, ketchup, and vinegar were placed at the center of each table.
And the best part of all, there was an unlimited supply of fish and chips!
Of course, after 3 pieces of fish and a large helping of French fries, I couldn’t even think about going back for more!
What Type of Fish To Use?
So what is the best type of fish to use for classic beer battered fish?
Well, to be honest, there are a few great options. And the best choice may depend on where you live and what type of fish that is available in your area.
Our very favorite fish to use for a fish fry is wild-caught, Alaskan Cod. It is what most restaurants use for their fish and chip baskets.
Cod is able to handle the coating of breading and the hot temperatures required to cook perfectly.
However, those that don’t mind farm-raised fish, tilapia is a popular choice. Tilapia is a very mild fish that will take on the taste of the batter seasonings.
In addition, catfish is also a popular choice. Although the catfish has a strong and distinct taste, it is extremely delicious when deep-fried.
But don’t forget what is also available locally. Wall-eye, perch and pollock are some other fantastic options for beer battered fish and chips!
How To Make Beer Battered Fish
Making delicious beer battered fish is easy to do.
Coat dried pieces of fish into a flour mixture that has been seasoned.
Then dredge the fish into the beer batter until well coated.
Finally coat the fish with the original flour mixture one last time and let it sit until you are ready to place them in the oil.
Speaking of oil, it is best to fry the fish at 375°F. This is the perfect temperature to crisp up the breading and cook the fish.
Any lower temperature and the breading absorbs the oil and becomes soft and may fall off.
Any higher and the breading will cook way faster than the fish and taste burnt.
However, there is one important point to remember when cooking in batches.
The temperature of the oil will decrease once the first fish gets added. Therefore, it is important to increase the heat after the first pieces of fish begin cooking.
This will allow the temperature to remain at 375° F during the entire cooking process. We always use a digital thermometer to keep track of the temperature while frying.
Don’t Forget The French Fries!
And no Fish & Chips would be complete without French Fries!
As the fish is cooling, you can add the french fries to the hot oil to cook. Frozen French fries only require 3-4 minutes to cook in the deep-fryer.
However, we prefer to use our air fryer to make frozen French Fries. As the fish is cooking, I throw a bunch in the air fryer and walk away.
By the time the beer battered fish is ready to be eaten, the fries are hot and ready at the same time!
And if you are looking for something a little healthier than fried fish, try our baked salmon recipe. It’s absolutely delicious!
Mary and Jim
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Homemade Beer Battered Fish Recipe
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 quarts canola or vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 pounds cod filet 1 inch thick and cut into 8 pieces
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 12 ounces cold beer divided
Dry the fish with paper towels and set aside.
In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the flour, cornstarch, salt, cayenne, paprika, and black pepper.
Remove 3/4 cup of the flour mixture and spread onto a rimmed baking sheet.
In a cast iron pan or in a deep-fryer, heat the oil over medium-high heat to 375°F.
Dredge each piece of the fish in the flour mixture on the rimmed baking sheet, shaking off the excess flour and place on a wire rack.
Add baking powder and 1 ¼ cups beer to the flour mixture in the bowl and stir until the mixture is just combined and the batter is still lumpy. Add the remaining beer, 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking until the batter falls from the whisk in a thin, steady stream and leaves a thin line across the top surface of the batter.
Dip a piece of fish in the batter and let the excess run off. Place the battered fish onto the baking sheet with the flour mixture and turn to coat both sides. Repeat with the remaining fish, keeping the pieces in a single layer on the baking sheet.
When the oil reaches 375°F, increase the heat to high and with tongs gently shake off any excess flour and add the battered fish to the oil.
Fry, flipping one time, until golden brown, 7 to 8 minutes.
Transfer the fish to a paper towel lined plate to drain. Repeat until all fish is cooked.
Serve with French fries.
Recipe courtesy of Old World Garden Farms