Sunday, October 16, 2011

From Something's Fishy : Give a Man a Fish....

And he'll most likely do something to make his doctor cringe. Sorry Doc.

A good friend of mine was kind enough to bring me a nice little Striped Bass he caught the other day. I'm not proud of stooping to the level of accepting "Charity Fish" , but I haven't been for a while and my buddy doesn't eat Stripers. I LOVE Stripers , but only if they are prepared correctly , and by prepared correctly I mean deep fried into greasy goodness.

I'll spare you the pics of bloody hands and fish being filleted , but I'm going to share my Striper recipe. First you'll need to fillet the fish , remove the skin and cut out the "Red" meat along the fish's lateral line. Next cut the fish into chunks - maybe 1 inch wide by 2 inches long or so. I like to soak mine in a mixture of salt water and lemon juice over night. No exact measurement , but probably around 2 or 3 tablespoons of salt , enough water to cover the fish and a few good splashes of lemon juice. This removes blood from the meat and the strong fish taste that some people don't like. **Very Important** Rinse it well , let's say 2 or 3 water changes , before cooking or it will be way too salty! You should have something that looks like this when you are done :
Next you'll need enough beer batter to coat your fish. Again , this isn't an exact science , just the way I throw things together in the kitchen. All measurements are approximate.

* 2 cups self rising flour (or all purpose flour with baking soda & powder)
* 1 egg
* splash of milk
* 1 tablespoon of cornstarch
* 1 can of beer (drink what you don't use)
* Old Bay Seasoning to taste ( I like about a tablespoon , maybe a little more)
* Pinch of garlic powder
* Fresh ground Black Pepper to taste

Whisk it all together until you have a nice thick batter. It should only take about 1/2 to 2/3 of a can of beer , so don't get carried away. If the batter is too thin it won't stay on the fish - adjust beer and / or flour until it is the desired consistency. Now is a good time to make hush puppy mix if you're going to , because it will turn out better if you let it sit for about 15-20 minutes before cooking.
Next , I like to dump the batter on the fish or if I'm doing other seafood like shrimp or scallops , just start dipping it and putting it in the deep fryer. I only put about 5-6 pieces in at a time. Any more than that and they won't all be done at the same time. So yeah , dump the batter on the fish and stir. It will look like this:
Start frying! Your oil should be hot at around 375 when you start. Fish will float when it is done , but let it go a little longer for thick pieces and to give it a nice golden brown color.
Take em out when they're floating high and place on several layers of paper towels to allow the grease to drain a little.
After you've done the fish , you can do a few hush puppies. They take a little longer than the fish , but not much. Just until they are golden brown.
That's it. I need to eat a salad today. Dinner was delicious last night
More than enough for a family of 4
Have a great week!

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