Get your fryer ready, because we have gone and perfected a recipe for fish and chips that even a true Brit would approve of. This British staple is made up of fish (typically cod or haddock) that is battered and fried, then served alongside thick fries. It's admittedly a lot of fried food, but we serve it alongside lemon wedges and a tangy tartar sauce for a touch of brightness.
If you can master the thermometer, you can become a master fryer. The trick for perfect fries is rinsing off the starch and blanching them first at a low heat to cook them, followed by high heat to crisp them. The same high heat is needed for the fish. This allows the batter to set when it hits the oil and not stick to the bottom of the pan. Dropping the fish into the oil slowly will also help ensure frying success.
To learn more, read "TT Culinary Institute: Fish & Chips."
Fish & Chips
Recipe from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen
Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes, plus cooling time
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes, plus cooling time
For the Tartar Sauce:
¾ cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons minced parsley
2 tablespoons minced cornichons
2 tablespoons minced capers
1 tablespoon malt vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
For the Fish & Chips:
Vegetable oil, for frying
4 medium (3 pounds) russet potatoes, cut into ½-inch batons and rinsed
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
1½ cups dark beer
2 pounds cod fillets, cut into 5-by-1-inch strips
Tartar sauce, for serving
Lemon wedges, for serving
Malt vinegar, for serving
1. Make the tartar sauce: In a small bowl, stir all the tartar sauce ingredients until smooth, then set aside.
2. Make the fish and chips: Preheat the oven to 250º. In a 6-quart Dutch oven, heat 2 inches of vegetable oil to 275º and line 3 baking sheets with paper towels. Working in 2 batches, blanch the potatoes in the oil until tender, but still pale in color, 6 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the potatoes to one of the prepared baking sheets to drain. Let cool completely in a single layer, allowing the fries to formed a tacky skin.
3. Increase the oil temperature to 375º. Working in 2 batches, fry the blanched potatoes until golden brown and crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the potatoes to the second prepared baking sheet to drain. Keep warm in the oven until ready to serve.
4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt until incorporated. Whisk in the beer until a smooth batter forms. Season the fish with salt, then, working in batches, dip the fish pieces into the batter and slowly drop into the fryer. Fry until golden brown and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer to the third prepared baking sheet to drain. Season immediately with salt.
5. Divide the fish and chips between plates and serve with tartar sauce, lemon wedges and malt vinegar.