Serious Eats: Recipes

Dinner Tonight: Beer-Battered Fish

According to Jasper White, the author of The Summer Shack Cookbook, the trick to making great fish and chips at home is to forget the chips and focus exclusively on the fish: "I have decided that making fish and chips in a home kitchen is crazy."

The issue? While both can be cooked in a big pot of a oil, each requires different temperatures and times—you either need two pots of bubbling oil or cook one before the other. Unfortunately, both taste best when eaten immediately. So do what I did and serve the fish with some coleslaw or broccoli instead of chips, and give the fish a little more attention.

And what a fish recipe this is. The batter is a mix of flour and cornstarch, which comes out shatteringly crisp and remarkably un-greasy. A nice English ale is the preferred beer of choice, though I imagine any good lager would work, too. Of course, it helps to have a nice fillet underneath; the cod I used worked perfectly. The fish was tender and flaky, and some malt vinegar added a nice bite.

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