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Deep-fried asparagus by Mark Hix

These make a delicious snack, starter or even canapes

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Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 300-400g/11-14oz asparagus, woody stems removed
  • Vegetable or corn oil for deep frying
  • Sea salt for sprinkling

For the cider batter

  • 100g/4oz self-raising flour
  • 25g/1oz cornflour
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Gaymer’s Orchard Reserve, or other sparkling cider, to mix

For the herb sauce

  • 2 tbsp chopped herbs, such as chervil, tarragon, parsley and chives
  • 2-3 tbsp good-quality or home-made mayonnaise

Method

For the batter, mix the flour and cornflour together. Season, then add enough cider to make a thickish batter. Set aside.

For the herb sauce, mix all the herbs with the mayonnaise, season to taste, then set aside.

In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, or electric deep-fat fryer, heat about 7.5cm/3in of oil to 160-180°C/300-350°F.

Dip the asparagus spears into the batter, a few at a time and coating them completely, then carefully drop them into the hot oil and cook for 2-3 minutes, turning with a slotted spoon until lightly golden. Remove, blot on kitchen paper, sprinkle lightly with sea salt and set aside.

Serve with the herb sauce in a bowl on the side for dipping.



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