Beer-Fried Fish

After you've spent hours catching them, chowing down on beer-fried fish is a fine way to end the day.

| March/April 1983

Like gold, fish — even in small quantities — can be stretched thin and still be appealing. If you don't have enough to go around as a main course, for example, you can flake the cooked (and cooled) meat off the bones and add it to a salad. And small strips of fish make a wonderfully tasty addition to stir fried dishes.

My favorite way to prepare pan-dressed or filleted fish, however, is to coat them with a thick batter and fry them in a little bit of cooking oil. I usually vary my recipe a bit every time I whip up a batch, but here's one "old standby" that's sure to please your palate:

Beer-Fried Fish

2 pounds of filleted or pan-dressed fish
1 can of warm beer
1 cup of whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon of pepper (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
salt to taste

Mix the ingredients (other than the fish) and let them stand about 1/2 hour at room temperature until the beer flattens. Then whisk the mixture until it's frothy, dip the fish in the batter (being sure to coat each piece well), and fry them in hot oil. Be careful not to overcook your fish! Even with a heavy batter insulation, they'll fry up incredibly fast. At medium heat, fillets take no more than a minute on each side. Fish flesh is thoroughly cooked as soon as it loses its transparent quality; any frying after that point is reached will destroy the delicate flavor.)

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