Fish & Chips is an old English pub food enjoyed by one and all. It’s seen on the streets of London and elsewhere, often stuffed in old newspapers and liberally sprinkled with salt and malt vinegar. Even here, across the pond as they say, it is enjoyed in restaurants, fairs, and restaurants where it is often served with cole slaw. Now you can make it at home, too.
Trivia: What the English call “chips” we call “French Fries”. What we call “chips”, they call “crisps”
Ye Olde Fish ‘n Chips
- 1-1/2 lbs. cod or halibut (or other firm, white fish)
- 2-1/4 cup salad oil, divided (**I use peanut oil)
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1-1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 egg
- 1 cup milk
- 4-6 medium sized flat russet potatoes
- salt & pepper to taste
- malt vinegar to taste
- Newspaper or brown paper bags
Rinse and dry the fish and cut into large chunks. Set aside on paper towels. Using a deep fryer# or electric fry pan, heat oil to 375. (If you are using a heavy non-electric fry pan, a 1″ square of bread will brown in 50 seconds). While oil is heating, Combine flour, baking powder, salt, egg and milk and whisk or use a hand mixer until batter is smooth and no lumps remain.
When oil is at 375, dip a few pieces of fish into batter, let excess drip back into bowl and carefully put into oil (WATCH OUT for splattering!). Do not crowd. When fish is golden brown, turn using tongs and let brown on the other side. When done, place in brown paper bags (left open for steam to escape). Return oil to 375 and add more fish until done. It is important that the oil be kept at 375 so the fish doesn’t absorb oil. Salt & pepper to taste or serve with Malt Vinegar.
For Chips: In another fry pan, heat oil as above. Scrub and dry potatoes and cut into strips. Dry well. Fry a few at a time as above. Salt & pepper to taste or serve with malt vinegar.
** I prefer peanut oil for all deep frying – and sautéing also because it has a much higher flash point and is less likely to catch fire. It also imparts no flavor to food.
#If you are using a Deep Fat Fryer, follow manufacturers recommendations for the amount of oil to use. To clarify oil after frying fish, put in several slices of raw potato, let them fry to a deep golden brown but not burned, strain and reuse several times until oil is deep amber colored. Then discard properly.