Italian Fried Seafood, or “Fritto Misto”, an easy mixed seafood, tossed with flour, fried and lightly salted. Serve with some homemade french fries and dinner is served.
Italian Fried Seafood
The first time I had this dish was at my own wedding reception in Italy. We were actually married in Toronto, but we had a second reception for my husband’s family and friends when we returned to Italy.
I have to say a wedding reception in Italy is like no other. If it starts at one o’clock you will probably finish eating at seven o’clock, with all those never-ending dishes, I kid you not!
And yes you would enjoy every minute of it.
If I remember correctly the Fried Seafood dish is approximately dish number four, and usually it is the dish everyone waits for.
Delicious seafood, shrimp, calamari rings and small bites of halibut deep-fried to perfection in a light flour coating and tossed with just the right amount of salt. And of course don’t forget the splash of lemon juice!
After my first taste I knew I would be making this Seafood Fry again and again. This dish is always very common on Christmas eve.
How to make Fried Seafood
- Clean and rinse the pieces of fish then place in a colander to drain.
- Place some flour on a medium-sized plate, toss the drained fish (a little at a time) in the flour.
- Deep fry the fish a little at a time until golden. I separate the types of fish I buy and fry one type at a time.
- Drain the fish on a plate lined with paper towels or a brown paper bag.
- Sprinkle with a little salt and toss to combine.
- Cover and keep warm (in the lowest temperature on your oven) while cooking the rest of the fish.
- Serve with lemon wedges.
What is the best oil for deep frying?
When frying, you should choose an oil that has a high smoke point, such as peanut, safflower, sunflower or even canola oil.
These oils also have a flavour that is either neutral or should not give off a taste to the fried food.
It is a good idea to pay attention to the temperature of the oil. Make sure it never drops below 350F (180C) or you will find that the fried food is anything but dry and crunchy, more like soggy and heavy.
What is the best fish to fry?
I like to use bite size pieces of haddock or cod, calamari rings and medium sized peeled shrimp, Italians also like to fry small fish such as anchovy.
It’s also best to make and eat fried food as soon as possible. Don’t let it sit too long.
December 24th is probably the biggest fish holiday of the year next to of course Good Friday. But I certainly make this Seafood Fry more than two times a year in my house.
I hope you enjoy it enough to make it more than once or twice in yours too.
What to serve with Fried Fish
I sometimes serve this dish with homemade french fries and sometimes I like to make a simple pan-fried potatoes as an accompaniment to this Seafood fry dish.
If you prefer oven baked potatoes, you could always serve Roasted Potatoes with Rosemary if you prefer.
How to make pan-fried potatoes
In a medium to large pan add 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil, 2-3 peeled chopped potatoes (bitesize) pieces, sprinkle with oregano, salt, minced garlic if you wish, hot pepper flakes or black pepper and chopped rosemary if desired.
Cook on medium high heat turning often until cooked thoroughly and browned. Serve immediately.
Whatever you choose to serve with this dish, I am sure this easy and delicious Italian Fried Seafood will be enjoyed. Buon Appetito!
Italian Fried Seafood
- 1 1/2 pounds seafood* (750 grams)
- 3/4 - 1 cup flour
- salt to taste
- vegetable oil for frying (I usually use sunflower oil)
*calamari rings, bite size pieces of halibut or cod, medium shrimp (cleaned and deveined).
- In a medium to large sized heavy bottom pot add 2 inches (5 centimeters) of vegetable oil and heat to 350° - 360°. Always keep the oil at this temperature while frying.
- Clean and rinse the fish then place in a colander to drain for about 10 minutes.
- Place the flour on a medium-sized plate, toss the fish* (a little at a time) with the flour.
- Fry the fish a small amount at a time, make sure not to crowd the fish, (I usually start with the calamari), deep fry until golden.
- Drain on a paper towel or brown paper bag lined plate, sprinkle with salt and toss to combine. Cover and keep warm (in the lowest temperature on your oven) while frying the rest of the fish. Serve immediately with fresh lemon wedges. Enjoy!
*It's best to do the same type of fish one at a time.