Pale Ale Whitefish and Crabmeat Hush Puppies

Fall 2013

Executive chef John Schofer of the Skyline Club in Southfield, Mich., puts a local spin on pub favorite fish and chips by using Michigan ale in the batter and enriching hush puppies with crabmeat. Call it luxury comfort food.

2 cups pale ale
2-1/2 cups powdered fry mix
6 firm whitefish fillets, skinned and pin bones removed
1 quart frying oil
Crabmeat Hush Puppies (recipe follows)
Lemon-Tarragon Aioli (recipe follows)

In a large bowl, whisk together ale with powdered fry mix until it has a pancake-batterlike consistency. Dip fillets in batter and drain excess.

In a deep frying pan, heat oil to 350 degrees. Gently place fish in hot oil and cook until golden on each side. Remove from oil and drain. Serve fish with hush puppies and aioli.

CRABMEAT HUSH PUPPIES 

1 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons pureed yellow onion
1 pound blue-crab meat
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
1 quart frying oil

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except oil and mix well.

In a deep fryer, heat oil to 350 degrees. Using a tablespoon, gently drop batter into hot oil and cook until golden brown. Drain on baking sheet lined with paper towels to remove excess oil. Serve hot.

LEMON-TARRAGON AIOLI

3 egg yolks
2 lemons, juice only
1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon fresh tarragon, chopped
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon pepper
6 ounces olive oil

In a food processor, combine all ingredients except oil. Mix on low until incorporated. Slowly add oil and combine. Serve on the side with fish and hush puppies.

CRAFT BEER PAIRING: Imperial Crème Brûlée Java Stout by Kuhnhenn Brewing Co., Warren, Mich. “It’s similar to a classic Irish stout, but with a light sweetness and creamy-malt flavors that marry well with crispy fried whitefish.” 

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