Monday, March 7, 2011

English type weather means English type food.

Snowy, rainy, cloud cover; sounds like typical English weather to me, or so I've heard. Never been to the country, hoping someday to be able to tour England, especially all those haunted castles. Until then though, I'll have to be satisfied with being able to make some of the dishes native to that country. Bangers and Mash, Toad in the Hole, Cotswold Chicken and the ever popular Fish and Chips. The secret to good English Fish and Chips is the batter used to coat the fish; beer or ale give it a flavor boost. However, the carbonation makes the fried batter light and crispy. Once the battered fish, or the chips (oh, that's fries if you didn't know), are in the hot oil; leave them be. Don't be poking and turning; just let the hot oil do its job, and when it's perfect, the fish or chips will float to the top.

Well, it's time to get dinner started, so I'm off to the kitchen. I'll be leaving you with my recipe for English Fish and Chips, so give it a try; and remember, the beer or ale you don't use in the batter you can drink up while you eat. Don't drink while frying, don't want any kitchen disasters happening. Enjoy!

English Style Fish and Chips


2 cups flour, divided in half (1 cup for batter, 1 cup for dredging)
2 eggs
¾ cup beer or ale
¾ cup milk
¾ cup white wine
½ tsp. cream of tartar
½ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. each salt and pepper
peanut oil
6 large potatoes (red skinned or golden yellow), cut roughly into 1” pieces
2 lbs. cod, or any other white meat fish (pollock, flounder), cut into 4” pieces


In a large bowl, combine 1 cup of flour, eggs, beer, milk, wine, cream of tartar, baking powder, salt and pepper. Mix well, cover and chill for 1 hour.

Fill deep fryer to maximum line, or large skillet ½ way up, with canola oil; heat to 375-400F. Cook potatoes until just lightly browned; drain on paper towels; season with salt; transfer to cookie sheet. When done frying, place potatoes in oven (set at 200F) to keep warm.

Remix batter; dredge fish pieces into remaining 1 cup of flour; dip into batter and place in hot oil (3-4 pieces at a time). When batter turns golden brown and begins to puff, drain on paper towels.

Serve fish and chips with tartar sauce, malt vinegar or any other desired condiment.

Makes 4 servings.

Mary Cokenour
October 1, 2002

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