Cider-Battered Whitefish Sandwich with Red Pepper Mayonnaise

Cider food pairings fish

When this recipe came together and we had it dressed for the photo, we thought it is just like at the Fish Shack. If you have ever had great fish and chips and thought I could never make it at home. This recipe is the one to change your mind. It is heavenly with our Yakima Valley Dry Hopped Cider.

Yield:  4 sandwiches
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cornstarch
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons lemon zest
12 ounces Tieton Cider Works Yakima Dry-Hopped cider
1 egg

1 large red bell pepper, roughly chopped
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives
Lemon juice, to taste
Salt, to taste

6-10 cups high-heat vegetable oil for frying
1 1/2 pounds whitefish (such as cod, haddock, flounder or halibut) cut into 4 1/2- to 1-inch-thick pieces
4 soft burger buns
8 leaves of romaine
Very thinly sliced red onion

In a large bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch, salt, lemon zest, cider and egg.  Whisk until the batter is smooth.  If it looks a little thick, add a tablespoon or two of water to thin.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes and up to 2 hours.

While the batter is resting, make the mayonnaise: Place the bell pepper in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the juices are released and the pepper is finely chopped (take care not to process the pepper into a paste).  Place the chopped pepper in a fine mesh strainer set over a small bowl.  Gently press on the chopped pepper to release excess juices.  Remove the juices and transfer the pepper to the bowl.  Add the mayonnaise, chives, 1 teaspoon of lemon juice and a generous pinch of salt.  Stir to combine.  Taste and add more lemon juice or salt as needed.  Set aside.

*Note: Red Pepper Mayonnaise will keep, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.