One of my friends, who lives in that area, spied the owner of said restaurant buying up a BUNCH of Krusteaz pancake Mix at the local big box mart. Krusteaz is a popular baking product out west and I can find it in Indiana stores now. Mom always loved it, for pancakes, the belgium waffle mixes, muffins and cookies that could be made up easily and taste like homemade.
Pancake Mix? Could that be the secret. They're not open for breakfast.
I tried it, not really having a recipe to go off of, just the one ingredient. It will never be as good as theirs but it's very close, and VERY good. The consistency is more like tempura than those heavy beer batters.
|Fresh white fish|
a six pack of ale (you won't use all of it, so you'll have to drink the rest)
Krusteaz buttermilk pancake mix
cayenne pepper or Old Bay Seasoning
canola oil for frying.
Cut good fresh white fish (halibut is my favorite) into big chunks. .
In one bowl put a little bit of the pancake mix, In another medium bowl, mix together pancake mix and beer, adding slowly until it's the consistency of motor oil. Try a piece of "test fish". It should leave a thin coating on the fish but should NOT run off in spots). Add a little bit of cayenne or a generous bit of Old Bay seasoning and a dash or two of salt to taste.
Heat oil to 350. USE A THERMOMETER. Fry the fish until golden and allow the oil to reheat to 350 between batches (not more than a minute or two normally). If you're using a deep fryer, fry the pieces one at a time, putting the cooked fish in a plastic strainer over a bowl so any excess oil drains.
Do NOT overcook. When done the coating will be golden brown and the flesh is easily flaked with a fork. However, the deep center of the pieces will continue to cook after removal from the oil.