Master the perfect beer batter for all your deep frying needs! This beer batter recipe will guarantee you'll have the best fish and chips ever.
I lived in England for seven years and let’s just say that when it came to fish and chips, I “got around.” From the northern to the southern tip of England, we hit many a fish & chip joint and it continues to be a favorite pastime. My family and I have tried several fish & chip places in the U.S. and sadly, none of them compare. Usually the problem is the batter.
Now, many will argue over what constitutes the “perfect” beer batter. Some will say the batter should be light and fluffy, others will say it should be more chewy and puffy (hey, that rhymes – ssssslick!), some will say it should be thin and others thick, and then others will say it should be crispy-crunchy. Of course it really just comes down to personal preference. But having made my way across the jolly old nation of England, enjoying fish & chips the traditional English way, I’m partial to one style: Perfectly crispy batter. The kind where you hear and feel it crunch when you bite into it and then encounter the tender flesh of the white fish. That’s what I’m talking about. And that’s what I’m going to show you today.
An “airy” batter is key and that’s achieved by using fizzy beer and some added baking powder. If you want a delightfully crispy batter don’t use egg. That will give you a chewier, cakier texture. If that’s what you prefer, feel free to use this recipe and beat an egg into the batter.
Another factor in achieving nice, crispy results is the thickness of the batter. Some chefs from fish & chip joints will argue that it should be so thin that when you lift the fish out of the batter you can see the fish through it. Others will argue that the batter should completely coat the fish. I like a happy medium – not too thin, not too thick – just thick enough to where I can dredge the fish in it, lift it out and let some of the excess drip off, and the fish is nicely coated.
Making a great beer batter is really simple and quick, and it’s also pretty versatile. For example, use it for fish & chips, battered and fried shrimp and calamari, or onion rings. I’m going to use some cod and onion rings today.
To make the batter, you'll need the following ingredients:
- 1 cup Gold Medal All-Purpose Flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cups light beer
- Extra flour for dredging
This will make enough batter for about 4-6 pieces of fish.