Numero Uno: See Beer Batter for our choice, at least temporarily for fish, poultry, and veggies. But we continue Notes: * Breading usually involves bread crumb, cornmeal, cornflakes or something other than flour as a coating. It could be eliminated for a lighter coating. A general rule of thumb for baking batter-dipped fish seems to be 10-12 minutesin a "very hot oven. . . or till fish flakes." (How you test flakiness without destroying the batter integrity is beyond me!) * I am guessing that whipped egg whites or baking powder serve the same purpose: to make the butter "puffy." More experimenting with that is necessary. * The Cook's Country Cookbook (America's Test Kitchen on public television) advises using Crisco in its recipe for crispy chicken, because it browned more evenly and tasted less greasy. * Chef Emeril Largesse uses haddock or other firm fish, rice flour and beer as his batter, and adds baking powder. * Bon Appetit, December 2001 fries catfish in a flour/beer batter and serves on top of vinegarey coleslaw. Malt Vinegar is recommended as a dip. * Paul Prudhomme simply dredges his catfish in a seasoned, cornmeal, corn flour, and regular flour base. He presses the fish firmly to be sure the coating adheres. 2. Mom Dorrington's favorite recipe from Parade Magazine, 3/26/00. Note: A low-cal approach to onion rings from the NBC Today Show-- dip onion slices in egg white, then crushed corn flakes and bake instead of deep frying. 4 catfish fillets, about 6 oz each 2 large onions, sliced and separated into rings tartar sauce (below) 1 cp flour 1 t salt 2 T melted butter 2 eggs, beaten 1 cp beer 2 egg whites, stiffly beaten vegetable oil for deep frying 1. Sift flour and salt into a bowl. 2. Stir in melted butter and the eggs. 3. Gradually add beer and stir till batter is smooth. 4. Let batter stand in a warm place for 1 hour. 5. When hour is almost up, beat egg whites and fold into batter. 6. Fill a large deep pot with vegetable oil; heat to 350 degrees. 7. Dip fish fillets in batter and cook 2 at a time in hot oil for 3-4 minutes per side, or till fish is golden and flakes easily when tested with a fork. Drain on a paper towels. 8. Dip onion rings into same batter and fry till golden, about 2 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with salt. 35 g carbohydrates, 32 g fat, 184 mg cholesterol.