Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Beer-Battered Fried Cod

Happy New 2013!  Do you resolve anything food-wise in this new year?  I would like to reduce our kitchen waste and eat less Cheez-its.  Seriously, I love those things, and that's a lot of salt.  

Many years ago, I was first introduced to my in-laws on a Friday night.  In Wisconsin.  A very popular thing to do up dere is enjoy a Friday night fish fry.  Of course, cocktail time begins at precisely 5:00PM.  Old fashioneds and Miller Lite are the common choices.  As for the fish, it's delicious golden brown fried cod served up with french fries, coleslaw, and lemon.  I think some places do perch too, but cod is my preference.  And to ensure a good first impression, the Chief pulled up in a 1989 convertible Chevy Iroc Z.  He got cool points for that.  

Before the usual posts of lighter, healthier fare as the new year comes around, here's some yummy fried food before the diet starts.  I promise your kitchen won't smell like fried fish for days, it's just a few pieces of cod.  One of those thermometers with a clip is very handy for measuring the temp of your oil-  if it's not hot enough, the fish will become soggy and your cardiologist won't be happy, not to mention your taste buds.  And if it's too hot, you'll have over-crisped fish before it's cooked through.   Always advisable with seafood, purchase from a good fishmonger and cook it the day you get it.  Recommended accompaniments for this meal are tartar sauce, potato pancakes and homemade applesauce.  And a Miller Lite wouldn't hurt either.    

Happy New Year!!

Tartar sauce-
mix 3/4 C mayo with 3 TB sweet pickle relish and 1 diced kosher dill pickle, 2 ts fresh dill, chopped.  Season with S&P.  Fridgerate until dinnertime. 

Beer Battered Fried Cod
4 servings

vegetable oil
2 C AP flour
1.75 C cold beer, Miller Lite preferred
1.75 lb skinless cod fillet, cut into four 6x2" pieces
freshly cracked black pepper
kosher salt
tartar sauce

Heat 2" of oil in a big ass cast iron dutch oven or a deep skillet, to 325F.

In a large bowl whisk 1.5 C of the flour with 1.5 ts kosher salt, then whisk in 1.5 C of beer.  The batter will be a bit lumpy which is fine.  Stash in the fridge for 15 minutes, then stir in the last quarter cup of beer.

Season the cod pieces with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper.  Place the remaining half cup of flour in wide, shallow bowl.  Dredge the fish in the flour, shaking off any excess, then dip into the beer batter, allowing any excess batter to drip off.  Fry in the hot oil, turning a couple times, until nicely golden brown and cooked through, about 8-10 minutes.  Drain on a rack over a sheet pan.  Sprinkle with a pinch of kosher salt and serve with the tartar sauce. 

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