Fried Fish Sandwich

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 30 min
  • Active: 15 min
  • Yield: 4 sandwiches
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Vegetable oil, for frying 

1 cup cornmeal

1 cup all-purpose flour 

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 tablespoon kosher salt

One 12-ounce bottle amber beer, such as Dos Equis

2 teaspoons hot sauce, such as Tabasco

Two 6-ounce tilapia fillets, cut in half 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 

Lemon Tarragon Tartar Sauce, recipe follows

4 soft potato rolls, such as Martin's

1 head green leaf lettuce

4 slices American cheese (optional)

Lemon wedges, for serving

Lemon Tarragon Tartar Sauce:

1 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons minced bread and butter pickles 

2 tablespoons minced scallions

1 tablespoon capers, drained and coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon

1 teaspoon stone ground mustard

Zest of 1 lemon

Juice of 1/2 lemon

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Fill a Dutch oven halfway full with oil and heat to 350 degrees F.
  2. Add the cornmeal, flour, baking powder and salt and whisk to combine in a large bowl. Whisk in the beer, being sure to remove any lumps. Stir in the hot sauce.
  3. Sprinkle the fillets with salt and pepper. Dip each fillet in the beer batter and add to the fryer, one at a time. Fry until brown and crispy, 3 to 4 minutes, flipping halfway through. Transfer the fillets to a wire rack on a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Repeat with the remaining fillets.
  4. Spread the Lemon Tarragon Tartar Sauce on the bottoms and tops of the rolls. Add the fillets and top with some lettuce and the cheese slices, if using. Serve with lemon wedges.

Lemon Tarragon Tartar Sauce:

Yield: About 1 1/4 cups
  1. Fold together the mayonnaise, pickles, scallions, capers, tarragon, mustard, lemon zest, lemon juice in a bowl and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Adjust the seasoning to taste. Cover the bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve, about 20 minutes.