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
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.