mix.jpg W H I T E B A I T - that distinctive New Zealand delicacy which measures 4.5 to 5.5 centimeters in length is eaten whole. It is not related to the European whitebait, and is caught during spring in the tidal river estuaries as the fish move upstream from the sea.

‘Whitebaiting’ is mostly recreational fishing, however there is commercial fishing on the West Coast of the South Island. Fishing for whitebait is controlled by ‘The Whitebait Fishing Regulations’. The juvenile smelt, an unrelated species, that is fished in the northern half of the North Island is often sold as Waikato whitebait.

Whitebait has a very delicate flavour, and for this reason should be cooked with care. Cooking needs to be brief and simple. Please enjoy these recipes……


Recipes

WHITEBATE ROLL

INGREDIENTS

1cup flour
50g butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon baking powder
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
` Cup mashed potato
1 egg

METHOD

Preheat oven to 170 c. Mix together flour, potato, baking powder, melted butter and beaten egg. Roll out on a lightly floured board and cover with the whitebait.Sprinkle with the chopped onion and seasonings. Roll up and bake an hour. Serve sliced either hot or cold.

ANGELA’S RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

6 eggs to 1 kilo of bait
Salt
1 table spoon flour
1 table spoon milk.

METHOD

Beat eggs until fluffy then add salt flour milk and beat again. Put whitebait into mixture while fluffy and mix together with spoon.
Cook in hot pan. Best with dripping or chefade

GREAT GRANDAD’S RECIPE


INGREDIENTS

½ kilo whitebait
½ cup milk
Salt and pepper

METHOD
Cook in pot until white and eat on toast.

MRS EGGELING'S RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

½ kilo whitebait
3 eggs [2 eggs for 250 g]
¼ teaspoon salt
Shake black pepper

METHOD

Using 2 bowls separate yokes from whites putting yolks in bowl with the bate and other ingredence and mix well
Using second bowl for whites. Beat until firm or stiff and fold into the bate.
Cook in a moderate or hot pan with 1 cm of butter. For best result don’t use more that ½ of bait as it takes to long to cook. The egg whites flatten.
Frozen Bait , Don’t drain off liquid just add hand full of flour into bate and mix well before folding in whites. If short on bair add extra egg. Enjoy.

WANGANUI RIVER CAMPERS RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

2 med size eggs
Salt and pepper
Rice flour

METHOD

Cook on hot skillet with a slice of butter.

WHITEBAIT SOUFFLE – from 1946 NZ “Truths” Cookery Book

Ingredients

1 Breakfast cup of milk,
1 tblsp butter
2 eggs
Half pint of whitebait
1 slice bread
Pepper and Salt

Method

Soak bread in milk, add butter and beat to a pulp. Then add egg yolks, pepper & salt; lastly add whites beaten stiffly and pour into buttered dish. Bake 20 minutes in a hot oven


WHITEBAIT OMELET
- Di's recipe, Pukeko Tearooms

Ingredients

3 eggs, 1/2 teaspoon salt,
25 grams butter, 1 cup whitebait.

Method

In a small bowl beat eggs and salt with fork. Heat butter in a medium fry pan. Pour in beaten eggs.Reduce heat slightly until omelet is half set, lifting the edges. While the top of the omelet is still liquid, spread the whitebait over it. Continue to cook until the egg is almost set. Season with salt. Remove the pan from the heat and leave the omelet to stand for about 2 minutes. Roll up the omelet, and place join downwards on the plate. Cut into 4 diagonal slices. Serve hot or cold . Serves 4.

WHITEBAIT DEAUVILLE
- Pukeko Tearooms

Ingredients

¼ cup whitebait,1 table spoon flour,
¼ teaspoon saltpepper, 25 grams butter,
lemon wedge

Method

Drain the whitebait and place in a bowl. Sprinkle with flour, salt and pepper. Heat butter in a small frying pan. Add whitebait all at once and cook turning constantly for about 1 minute. Pile onto a warm plate, and serve with a lemon wedge. Serves 1.


WHITEBAIT FRITTERS - Pukeko Tearooms

Ingredients

1 egg, 1 tablespoon flour,
¼ teaspoon salt, ½ cup whitebait,
25 grams butter, 1 tablespoon oil.

Method

In a small bowl whisk the egg until frothy. Fold in the flour and salt. Add whitebait and stir to just combine. Heat butter and oil in a fry pan. Drop spoonfuls of whitebait into hot butter. When golden brown turn to cook second side. Serve hot. Serves 3



TIPS

* Thaw frozen whitebait in milk give a good flavor

* A touch of ground ginger for frozen bait gives a flavour.


TIPS FOR TASTE

Mint sauce, vinegar, lemon juice


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