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Whitebait
Whitebait are the small fry of herring and sprats and used to be netted extensively in the Thames. In Greenwich, whitebait feasts at the Trafalgar Tavern and the Old Ship Tavern were popular events. Fresh whitebait is still caught in quantity at the mouth of the estuary at Southend, where a Whitebait Festival takes place annually, a celebration and blessing of the first catch.

INGREDIENTS:Whitebait - 450 g (1 lb), Seasoned flour - for coating, Oil - for frying, Salt, Lemon wedges, Parsley - freshly chopped.

COOKING: 1. Wash and dry the fish ands coat in seasoned flour.
2. Heat the oil and put about a quarter of the fish in the frying basket. Shake out any loose flour.
3. Deep fry until crisp, about 3-4 minutes. Remove the fish from the pan to a warmed serving dish and continue to cook the remaining whitebait.
4. When all are done, return the fish to the basket and fry for a few seconds in very hot oil to crisp up. Drain well on kitchen towel, sprinkle with salt and garnish with lemon wedges and parsley.
5. Serve with brown bread and butter and, if desired, Tabasco sauce or cayenne pepper.