The smart folks at Scientific American get into the nitty gritty of why things deep fried in a beer batter are better than things that are just plain old deep fried.
The alcohol in the beer also plays an important role in moderating the internal temperature and crisping the crust. Alcohol evaporates faster than water, so a beer batter doesn’t have to cook as long as one made only with water or milk. The faster the batter dries, the lower the risk of overcooking the food. If the chef works fast enough, he can create a beautiful lacework in the coating that yields that classic beer-batter crunch.
How badly do I want a plate of fish and chips right now? [via BB]