When fried in deep fat, PERCH is found to be very appetizing. To prepare it in this way, secure a PERCH and scale and clean it. Cut it crosswise into 2-inch strips, roll each piece in flour, and fry in deep fat until nicely browned. Serve hot with lemon or with a Sauce of some kind.
Woman’s Institute Library of Cookery, Vol. 3
Volume 3: Soup; Meat; Poultry and Game; Fish and Shell Fish (Year 1928)
Having cleaned the FISH and dried them, with a cloth, lay them, side by side, on a board or large dish; sprinkle them with salt, and dredge them with flour. After a while turn them, and salt and dredge the other side. Put some lard or fresh BEEF-dripping into a frying-pan, and hold it over the fire. When the lard boils, put in the FISH and fry them of a yellowish brown. Send to table with them in a boat, melted butter flavoured with anchovy.
Flounders or other small FISH may be fried in the same manner.
You may know when the lard or dripping is hot enough, by dipping in the tail of one of the FISH. If it becomes crisp immediately, the lard is in a proper state for frying. Or you may try it with a piece of stale bread which will become brown directly, if the lard is in order.
There should always be enough of lard to cover the FISH entirely. After they have fried five minutes on one side, turn them and fry them five minutes on the other. Skim the lard or dripping always before you put in the FISH.
Directions for Cookery, In Its Various Branches.
Ladies and Professional Cooks.
The Whole Science and Art of Preparing Human Food. (Year 1840)