Saturday, July 24, 2010

RECIPE - Fried Needlefish (Angulhinha Frito)

This quick recipe for crispy-fried needlefish is an at-home version of the dish that is served at beach bars throughout Brazil. It's a perfect finger food to serve outdoors on a hot day, accompanied by cold, cold lager beer.

This recipe from the small Brazilian state of Alagoas adapts itself to any small fish, just as smelt, whitebait, or whatever your fishmonger might have that's in the 2-4 inch category. The fish need to be cleaned first, but nothing more - leave on the heads, fins, tails and scales. It's up to the eater to decide how much of the fish he or she wants to eat. Some fussy eaters carefully remove the two fillets and discard the rest of the fish. Others gobble them whole, especially savoring the crunch bits from the tail and head.
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RECIPE - Fried Needlefish (Angulhinha Frito)
Serves 2

1/2 lb (300 gr) cleaned needlefish or other small silver fish
Juice of one lime
Salt to taste
1 cup (250 ml) all-purpose flour
3 cups neutral vegetable oil, peanut oil preferred
Washed lettuce leaves for decoration
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Season the fish with lime juice and salt. Put the flour in a paper bag, then dredge the fish in the flour. Shake the excess flour off the fish and lay them on a cookie sheet, making sure they don't touch each other.

Heat the oil in a large, heavy frying pan, and when hot, but not smoking, add the fish, in batches if necessary to avoid crowding. Fry for 10 minutes, or until cooked and nicely crisped. Remove the fish and let drain on paper-towels.

Line a serving platter with the lettuce leaves, place the fish on top, then add the lime wedges.

Serve immediately.

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