Category Archives: Fish recipes

>Thornbridge Italia

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Thornbridge’s Italia was a beer that I’d been waiting for with particular interest; I’m a big fan of Lager – when done right, good Lager can be so good. But we don’t get a lot of that good stuff over here. Italia (4.8%abv) is the result of a collaboration with Maurizio Folli of Birrificio Italiano; properly lagered, and is loaded with Hallertau Northern Brewer, Perle and Spalter Select hops.

But is it any good? I bought this the same weekend as Sharp’s Monsieur Rock, but held off drinking them both in the same session – I feared they would be too alike. I was quite wrong – Italia is unashamedly Lager; Uber-Pale, good carbonation, and meant to be served chilled. There’s the malty, biscuity backbone that I was hoping for; a creamy, malted-milk heart. On top of that there’s Lime and Lemon, and I actually thought the Lime-zest nose got more intense as the pint wore on. It’s citrus all the way, but not too sweet. I liked it a lot, but I don’t think I could drink a lot of it – it’s not a session beer; the flavours are too big. But that’s not a bad thing.

In fact, it formed part of a very enjoyable meal – chunks of Coley, dredged in flour, paprika and pepper, deep fried until golden and served with a Garlic and Lime mayo. Perfect finger-food, and accompanied by a great, sharp, citrussy beer. Hang on – Lager. Watch out for it on keg at various pubs around the country.

>Landlord’s Fish Bites

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Beer-battered Fish is a beercooking classic – and rightly so. This isn’t an original recipe by a long shot but is easy and tastes great. Cook in as large quantities as you need for guests at a gathering. Serve –of course – with handcut, beef-fat fried chips.

You will need (to serve four):
Three large fillets of white fish, cut into hearty chunks – (Cod,Haddock or Pollock are good)
250g plain flour (plus extra for dusting)
¾ pint of Timothy Taylor’s Landlord Pale Ale (well chilled)
Pinch of salt
3 tsps of baking powder
A pinch of chilli flakes, a pinch of black pepper and a good sprinkle of paprika
Sunflower oil to fry in – I mix half oil with half dripping or even goose fat!

1. To make the Batter, simply sieve the flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Add the beer and stir well. You want a thick emulsion – but not too thick. You’ll know when it’s ready.
Heat up your oil – it needs to be good and hot – about 160c. To test, simply fry a chunk of bread. If it fries cleanly and floats to the top, you’re done.
2. On another plate, sprinkle some of the flour and season this with pepper, chilli flakes and paprika. Dust the fish in this before dredging through the batter.
3. Drop the fish into the oil (away from you) and fry for about 5-6 minutes, or until golden brown. Don’t overcrowd the pan – only do a couple of pieces at a time. Take care not to overcook – you want the fish to stay moist.
4. When ready simply leave to drain for a minute or so on some kitchen paper. Serve with slices of lemon and a good dose of salt and vinegar!

I’ve used Timothy Taylor’s Landlord here because it’s an assertive beer that punches through the batter. However, any beer that you feel fits this bill will do. Experiment! I can also recommend Moorhouses’s Pendle Witches Brew for good beer-batter, too.
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