On my recent travel to St. Lucia I ate the most delicious fried fish ever eaten in my entire days. It was so lightly battered and crispy it practically melted when you breathed on it. I have never come so close to becoming a pescatarian.
I’ve tried recreating the airy, crispy, bite-sized pieces of golden deliciousness 3 times – each has brought me closer to my dream of fried fish perfection. This recipe has been my best attempt to date! I used rockfish here, but tilapia or cod are accessible and good alternatives.
1 lb. of white-fleshed fish fillets
3 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon flour
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon coconut curry powder (see end note)
1 tablespoon whipping cream
¼ ice cold club soda
2 cups neutral-flavored oil for frying (e.g., canola, safflower or vegetable
Cut the fillets into the 1-inch wide strips. They do not have to be perfect – the imperfection will add to the overall look at the end.
Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Mix the wet ingredients (egg, cream, and soda) together then add to the dry ingredients. Mix briefly until smooth. Note: the mixture should be thin.
Heat the oil in a saucepan until the surface simmers but the oil is not smoking.
Fry the fish in small batches for 2 minutes on each side until lightly golden and crispy. Tip: Immediately after frying, drain the fish on paper towels, leaving lots of room between them so they don’t become oil-soaked or steam. Serve as soon as possible for the best taste. End note: You can buy coconut curry powder at a few grocery stores (or if you happen to be in the Caribbean). If not, use 2 tsp madras curry powder and substitute the whipping cream for 1 tbsp coconut milk.