Required : One pint of whitebait. Three ounces of flour. Salt and pepper. One lemon. (Sufficient for three to four.)
Sieve the flour on to a large sheet of paper. Put a few fish at a time into the flour, toss them lightly in it, so as to separate each one, and handle them as little as possible.
Put a few of them at a time into the frying-basket, shake them gently over the paper to remove any loose flour. When a very thick smoke rises from the fat, for it must be very hot, lower the basket gently into it, and fry the fish for about two minutes, shaking the basket gently all the time. Then turn the fish on to kitchen paper and let them drain; fry more in the same way, until all the fish are cooked.
Then put enough of the fish back in the basket to fill it to the depth of the fat in the pan. Re-heat the fat until the smoke is quite thick again, then re-fry the fish for about half a minute. Drain them well on paper, and serve them piled up on a fish napkin.