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Beer Battered Fried Asparagus with Spicy Garlic Aioli

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Level: Easy

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Description

At our favorite brewery, they have an appetizer of pale ale battered asparagus. After trying it, I was hooked! I love the tempura-like batter over the tender stalks. The key to the batter is to use a light colored ale; I happened to use an IPA. The dipping sauce is creamy, garlicy, and surprisingly light (thanks to the lemon). These are great for parties! Make sure to use tender, young stalks for best results.

Ingredients

  • FOR THE SPICY GARLIC AIOLI:
  • 2 Tablespoons Mayonnaise
  • 1 clove Finely Minced Garlic
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • ⅛ teaspoons Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
  • FOR THE BEER-BATTERED ASPARAGUS:
  • 1 cup All-purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • ½ teaspoons Baking Powder
  • ¾ cups Light-colored Beer
  • ½ cups Water
  • Fryer Oil, As Needed
  • 1 pound Fresh Asparagus Stalks

Preparation

Combine all ingredients for the aioli and allow to sit for 1 hour in the refrigerator, covered.

For the beer batter:
1. Combine the flour, salt, and baking powder.
2. Using a whisk, slowly add the beer and water while stirring constantly. You might have to add a little more water depending on the dryness of your flour. You want a pancake-batter consistency.
3. Allow to sit for 10 minutes.

For the asparagus:
1. Preheat fryer oil to 375ºF. I use vegetable oil but you can use whatever flavorless oil you prefer.
2. Wash asparagus. Snap the stalks to remove the rigid portion of the stalks.
3. Dredge each stalk through the batter while holding one end. Place immediately into the fryer and cook until golden brown. This goes really quickly, about 90 seconds to 2 minutes is all it takes. You will have to fry in batches as you do not want the oil temperature to drop too much. About 10 stalks at a time is all that I recommend in a deep fryer.
4. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate or baking sheet.

Serve hot with aioli for dipping.

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