Fried scampi in cones

Serves 10
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Indy Lifestyle Online

Miniaturised popular bar food like this makes perfect party food. You can serve it like I have by simply making a cone out of thick paper or card and you can even print the occasion on to the paper. If you're a handyman, you can drill 2cm wide holes in a thin piece for the cones to drop in to.

Peeled scampi can be bought frozen and Young's now sells fresh peeled langoustine tails. Just in case you're wondering, scampi, langoustines and Dublin bay prawns are one and the same thing. I'm always curious as to where that story of restaurants and pubs serving pieces of crumbed monkfish instead of scampi comes from: I think it must have been an old wives' tale.

150g peeled scampi tails
2tbsp plain flour
4tbsp self-raising flour
Beer or lager to mix
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
Oil for deep frying
Lemon wedges for serving

For the tartare sauce

2-3tbsp good quality mayonnaise
4 small gherkins, chopped
1tbsp capers, rinsed and chopped
1/2tbsp chopped parsley

Pre-heat 8cm of oil to 180C in a large thick-bottomed saucepan or electric deep-fat fryer.

Mix all of the ingredients together for the tartare sauce. Mix the self-raising flour with enough beer to make a thickish batter, then season. Have a plate ready lined with some kitchen paper and a slotted spoon.

Season the plain flour well then coat the scampi in the flour, shaking off any excess, then pass through the batter and drop straight into the hot fat using a spoon or your fingers. Fry for 2-3 minutes until golden, turning with a slotted spoon every so often. Drain on the kitchen paper and season with a little salt. Serve in the cones with the lemon and the tartare separately.

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