Boquerones Fritos Recipe

Deep Fried Whitebait

This popular dish is served all over Spain but especially in the south. It will probably have been on every menu you saw while on holiday there. The most difficult thing about this recipe will be getting hold of the white bait fished used in it as they are not very common outside of Spain but hopefully your fishmonger will be able to get some for you.

Boquerones Fritos Ingredients

Serves 4 – 6 as a large tapa

  • 250g of whitebait
  • 6 heaped tablespoons of plain flour
  • sunflower oil for deep frying
  • 2 lemons cut into wedges
  • salt and pepper

Cooking Method

The first thing you will have to do is remove the heads and guts from the fish. This is quite easy as they are so small to begin with.

Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a deep bowl. Don’t be tempted to leave the salt out as it is a very important ingredient. There won’t be much flavour without it.

Pour the sunflower oil into your deep fat fryer or a deep saucepan on a medium heat until it is smoking hot. It is very important that the oil is very, very hot. Dip the whitebait in the bowl of seasoned flour making sure they are coated thoroughly.

Once the oil is hot drop a large handful of fish into it and fry for about 1 minute until it is golden brown. Remove the fish from the oil using a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Fry the remaining fish in the same way but make sure the oil is still very hot. You may need to do this in small batches depending on the size of fryer you are using.

Be careful not to add too much of the fish to the fryer at one time as this will cause the oil to cool too much and the flour will absorb too much of the oil.

Serve with lemon wedges on the side.