|Fish in ultimate crispy batter|
This was a response to a crispy snack request . I had a nail biting moment , putting my air-flown salmon at risk trying this recipe. Previous attempt included batter that stuck to anything but the fish or batter that was too dense or too thin. As usual, there was also the perennial problem of the batter not being able to sustain its crispiness.
This pillowy batter recipe needs no beer or sparkling water or special flour. It uses baking powder as leavening and very cold water to shock the batter into blossoming in the hot oil. I may not be one for deep fried food but while eating this airy battered fish, even I was already thinking of tempuras and goreng pisang ( banana fritters ) with this batter.
In case you are wondering if the batter could sustain its crisp, I am proud to announce that the battered fish remained crispy 2 hours after frying. To rejuvenate leftovers, simply put them under the grill and it will be as good as 'new'.
And finally one tip : Keep the batter cold, for optimum effect. In between the frying batches, keep the batter cold by leaving it in the fridge until the next batch of fish is ready for frying.
Adapted from here, which came with many rave reviews.
1 cup all-purpose flour , chilled in the freezer
1/8 teaspoon chilli flakes ( or any herbs you fancy )
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup water, ice cold ( I chilled this in the freezer )
Enough oil to deep fry the fish. As a guide, the depth of the oil should be at least 3 times the thickness of the fish to prevent the batter sticking to the base of the pot due to insufficient oil.
Extra flour for dusting
Cut fish to bite size, no thicker than one phalange.
Dust the fish with flour. I shake the fish in a plastic bag of flour to do away with the washing.
Heat oil. Oil is ready when bubbles cluster around a wooden skewer dipped in the oil, about 200C.
Mix flour, chilli flakes, baking powder, salt. Whisk in very cold water.
Coat dusted fish with batter.
Fry for 5 minutes on medium high heat until batter appears pale golden.
Drain on kitchen paper. Serve hot.