It wasn’t until I moved to NZ that I first started making fritters. I consider fritters to be one of a New Zealand’s national foods. They make fritters out of anything–beets, corn, sweet potato….White bait fritters could be called NZ’s national dish. For a Kiwi, the fritters I am about to describe are not actually white-bait. They are silver fish, and Chinese, in fact even comparing the two is a sin.
NZ white bait are a whole other ball-game, any Kiwi will tell you that. They are much more expensive than silver-fish. During the white bait season in New Zealand, all ages can be found down on the beach pulling white-bait fresh out of the water, whisking them up with some eggs and right into the frying pan with some butter. Talk about fresh! This recipe is my version and we think it is very tasty even if you have to use silver fish instead of white bait. These days you may also want to know where your fish came from, because it isn’t recommended to eat fish from the Pacific Ocean because of the Fukushima disaster.
- 330 g white bait (silver fish if you must)
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- herb (optional) I like spring onions, perilla, mint, basil or tarragon
- frying fat, I like to use lard or butter
Mix all the ingredients together. Heat fat in a skillet. Drop tablespoons full of batter into the pan and fry to golden on each side. Remove and eat with lime.
In the fritters pictured below I used perilla  (pictured above), which is a herb in the mint family and is used widely in Japan. It was very tasty in the fritters, as it is a little like tarragon. It isn’t very easy to come across and is often made into a tea.
Using silverfish is an affordable way to get nutrient dense food into your body. These days it is best to be wary of seafood since such high levels of radiation have gotten into the ocean.