In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside. In another bowl, whisk together beer, eggs, butter, 1 tbsp (15 mL) orange zest, 3 tbsp (45 mL) orange juice and vanilla. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients until just moistened. Fold in apples.
Heat a large saucepan filled with 2-in. of oil over medium-high heat until an instant read thermometer reads 375°F (190°C). Working in batches, carefully drop heaping tablespoons of batter into hot oil and fry until golden brown, about 2 min. per side. Using tongs, carefully remove fritters from oil and place on a paper towel–lined plate. Dust with icing sugar and serve warm with French Vanilla Ice Cream.
Crisp apples, like Cortlands, work best for this recipe.