Beer Battered Fish Tacos with Caper Creme Fraiche

Beer Battered Fish Tacos

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There’s a science to a light and crispy batter and the secret lies with beer. It’s complex physical properties mean that it creates a long lasting source of carbon dioxide (partly due to “foaming” proteins in the mash that help a beer keep it’s head) which makes it a great base for a light and crispy batter. As the CO2 foams in the batter while cooking, it creates an insulating barrier between the external heat and the contents inside, allowing delicate proteins like those in fish to cook gently while the batter crisps up forming a crunchy, light shell. If you’re keen on more detail, have a read of this article “Beer Batter Is Better” published back in 2011. Otherwise, just get cookin’ to find out!

When cooking with beer, it’s important to balance the bitterness of hoppy beers, because when they’re introduced to heat, the hops will only increase in bitterness. It’s easy to balance that bitterness when you’re using beer in a sauce or a gravy, but in a batter that would be tricky, so rather than use an IPA or an English style ale, opt for a beer with low-medium hop bitterness. We’ve used a Kolsch-style beer brewed by Northbound brewery in Derry. The “08” has a low hop profile but keeps it’s head well making it perfect for a beer batter. This beer proudly wears a great taste 2015 award, so since the recipe doesn’t call for the whole bottle, your thirst stays deliciously quenched while you cook up a storm in the kitchen!

Kolsch

Image from Northbound Brewery’s website.

For the caper creme fraiche dressing, I used pickled nasturtium capers, picked up from my neighbour @Inns Market, Indie Fude. Jonny who runs Indie Fude does a great job curating high quality artisan goods up and down the country so it’s always interesting to see what he has along with him at the Market. The capers were pickled with dill and mustard seeds, and were delicious with the fish taco’s!

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Beer Battered Fish Tacos with Caper Creme Fraiche

Ingredients

Serves 2:

250g Fresh Cod Loin

150g Morton’s Plain Flour

150mL Northbound Brewery’s Kolsch-Style Ale

1 Egg

1 Tsp Baking Powder

1/2 Tsp Smoked Paprika

1/2 Tsp Crushed Chilli Powder

1/2 Tsp Garlic Granules

Sea Salt Flakes

Rapeseed Oil for Deep Frying

For the Caper Creme Fraiche Dressing:

2 Tbsp Creme Fraiche

2 Tsp Pickled Capers with Pickle Juice

1/4 Tsp Dill Pollen Atlantic Sea Salt

1 Tbsp Chopped Fresh Dill

For the Tomato Salsa:

2 Plum Tomatoes, Grated

1 Clove of Garlic, Grated

1 Tsp Grated Ginger

1 Tbsp Fresh Corriander

1 Tbsp Broighter Gold Chilli Infused Oil

For the Tacos:

250g Plain Flour

1 Tsp Baking Powder

Pinch of Sea Salt

2 Tbsp Broighter Gold Lemon Infused Rapeseed Oil

125mL Cold Water

Method

Preparation time: 25 minutes

Cooking time: 25 mins

Calories per serving (3 Tacos): 515 Calories

Tomato Salsa

Mix the grated plum tomatoes (excl. skin), garlic, ginger, chilli oil & corriander in a bowl & season with salt and pepper.

Tacos

Sift the flour & baking powder into a large bowl and add the salt and oil.

Gradually add the water to the bowl to form a dough & knead for 5 mins.

Divide the dough into 6 balls and roll each into a thin, circular shape.

Cook the rolled dough on a hot dry pan until the underside starts to brown, flip and repeat.

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In a hot pan, shallow fry half of the taco base, while holding the soft taco at a 45 degree angle. Once half of the taco is crispy, flip to fry the other half until crispy.

Caper Creme Fraiche

Finely chop the capers and mix into the creme fraiche with the sea salt, fresh dill and pickle juice.

Beer Battered Cod

Sift the flour and baking powder into a large bowl and mix in spices & a pinch of salt.

Crack the egg into a well in the flour and mix through the flour.

Gradually add the beer, mixing well to break any flour lumps until you have a smooth batter.

Cut the cod loin into 1.5-2 inch cubes.

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Dip the fish into the batter and transfer into a deep fryer on a high heat to cook until the batter turns golden and crispy.

Salt the battered cod pieces immediately after cooking.

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Assemble the tacos however you like them and wash it all down with the rest of that delicious beer!

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SculleryMade produces artisan goods using quality, local ingredients in Belfast. For recipe ideas using local ingredients check out our blog http://scullery-made.com 

For SculleryMade goods & other local artisan produce, come and find the maid at Inns Market on the last Saturday of every month!

SculleryMade – Ormeau Rd, Belfast                                                      Contact: Caoimhe@scullery-made.com

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