- 1 pound tiny whole fish (such as blue anchovies)
- 1 tablespoon salt (finely ground)
- 1 cup flour (all-purpose)
- 1 to 2 cups oil for frying
- 4 to 8 lemon wedges
Gather the ingredients. Pick through your fish to look for any that are not pristine. You are looking for ones where the bellies are torn open.
This is from enzymes within the fish breaking it down. Toss these and use only those that look nice, smell a bit like cucumbers (not like nasty fish) and that have clear eyes.
Mix the salt and flour well.
Pour the oil into a cast-iron frying pan or other suitable pan and heat it to 350 F over medium heat.
Dust the fish in the seasoned flour and then shake off the excess. Fry in batches, stirring them so they don’t stick together, for 2 to 3 minutes per batch.
Drain the fried tiny fish on a fine-meshed rack or paper towels. If you are making a lot of them, heat the oven to warm and place the fish in the oven until you are ready to serve since it is important that you serve whitebait toasty hot.
Serve and enjoy!