So this is a simple whitebait recipe that isn’t a fritter .. I dunno, I just reckon whitebait fritters are so .. old fashioned .. (I’ll post that recipe soon lol) Maybe they’re classic, who knows. Anyway.. To serve 2-4 (depending appetite!) of my take on Whitebait, you will need:
450 g/1 lb whitebait, thawed if frozen
3/4 c plain white flour
1 3/4c corn flour
1/2 t salt
1 c cold water (tops)
1 free range egg
A few ice cubes
Rice bran oil, for deep-frying
Lemon wedges, to serve
Chili and lime mayo:
1 egg yolk
1 T lime juice
1 fresh red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
2 T chopped fresh parsley
1 c light olive oil
Salt and pepper
To make the mayonnaise, place the egg yolk, lime juice, chilli, parsley, and seasoning in a food processor and process until foamy. Sounds attractive eh lol
With the machine still running, gradually add the olive oil, drop by drop, until the mixture begins to thicken.
Continue adding the oil in a steady stream until all the oil has been incorporated. GO SLOW or it will split!
Taste and adjust the seasoning and add a little hot water if the mixture is too thick. Set aside to serve later..
Rinse the whitebait and pat dry. Tell them how sorry you are .. do it! Let drain on paper towels.
Sift together the flour, corn flour and salt into a large bowl. Whisk together the water, egg, and ice then pour onto the flour mix. Whisk briefly until the mixture is runny, but still lumpy with dry bits of flour still apparent.
Yes, you want the lumpy thing happening kinda like tempura .. it is SO good, trust me – don’t over mix here.
Meanwhile, fill a deep fry pan about a third full with oil and heat til a cube of bread browns in 30 seconds. (chuck the bread in when you turn the heat on .. once it rises to the top, throw it out and you’re good to go!)
Dip the whitebait, a few at a time, into the batter and carefully drop into the hot oil.
Deep-fry for 1 minute until the batter is crisp but not browned. Drain on paper towels and keep warm while you cook the remaining fishies..
Serve hot (don’t leave them sitting around too long or they’ll go soggy) with the mayonnaise and lemon wedges..
PS if you can’t be fagged making the mayo just grab some kato mayo and mix in the chilli then zest a lime into it .. no one need know 😉