For my birthday last year I got a deep fryer. Itâ€™s a scary thought, when you can imaging three meals a day being deep fried. But itâ€™s turned out to be great, and is only brought out on special occasions. Most recently weâ€™ve been frying a lot of local yellow perch in it. Itâ€™s nice to drive down to Port Dover and pick up fresh fillets and fry them up that very day.
I like to make a beer batter for the fish using a mild, not too hoppy beer. Even if you like weird beers, try to avoid using them in a batter since theyâ€™ll overpower the fishâ€™s flavour. The batter Iâ€™ve been making is a 1.5 cups of spelt flour, one bottle of beer, and a bit of salt. This will coat around two pounds of perch.
Nothing goes better with fish, than chips. So we usually make up a batch of fries. Theyâ€™re usually blanched earlier in the day and drained so theyâ€™re dry for frying. You can fry them all at once, but they taste better if theyâ€™re fried twice, Belgian-styleâ€“once at a lower temperature and then fried quickly at a higher temperature. We donâ€™t have two fryers, and are too impatient to change temperature, so we just blanch them and then fry them hot. They taste great.
Itâ€™s a bit tricky not letting the batter fry itself around the basket. If theyâ€™re just dropped in, theyâ€™ll sink while theyâ€™re still soft. I have to slowly lower them until they start to float so they donâ€™t have a chance to weld themselves to the mesh.
The fish cooks in a few minutes and we let them drain on paper towel. Theyâ€™re great with our homemade ketchup, however weâ€™re going to have to start making our own tarter sauce.