Julie Biuso's best ever fish and chips
Serves about 4 (It may not make enough chips for your family. Mmmm. Well, here’s the deal: you can’t simply chuck in more potatoes to feed more mouths. You can get away with maybe one extra potato but if you add too many, they’ll steam and you’ll never get them crisp and golden)
- 3 large floury potatoes - choose long potatoes rather than squat ones
- ½ cup olive oil
- flaky sea salt
Peel potatoes and cut into long fat fingers. Soak chips in cold water for 15 minutes. Drain, then pat thoroughly dry with a clean tea towel.
Heat olive oil in a large frying pan (you’ll need a pan with a lid) over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, carefully lower in potatoes - they do not have to be in one layer. Immediately cover pan with a lid and turn heat to low. Cook for 10 minutes. Remove lid, inverting it quickly so moisture stays in the lid and doesn’t fall back into the pan. Turn chips over with a slotted spatula and tongs. Drain off moisture from lid. Replace lid quickly and cook for a further 5 minutes. Remove lid, increase heat to medium-high and continue cooking until golden and crusty, turning chips frequently with a spatula. The chips should stay in clumps, not be separate. Don’t worry if they break apart - these are not meant to look like they were made under golden arches!
When they’re ready, transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Serve hot.
Do not use pre-washed ‘salad’ potatoes. You need floury potatoes, the sort good for roasting.
Do not substitute rice bran oil or other oils for olive oil - or if you do, be it on your head (don’t call me up, disappointed). Use olive oil.
You need a large frying pan with a lid, but if you don’t have a lid, you can cover the pan with a baking sheet, but lift it off quickly the same way as described in the recipe, so moisture doesn’t drip back onto the chips, and wipe the lid dry with paper towels before replacing it for further cooking.
Hot chips are called hot chips for a reason: eat them nice and hot, with plenty of sea salt. Scrumptious!
Crispy beer-battered fish
This is a great fish batter - crisp, puffy and fluffy, with an underlying yeasty aroma, and an ability to stay crisp for some time.
- 750g (1¼-1½ pounds) filleted white fish
- olive oil for frying
- sea salt, vinegar, tomato ketchup, lemon wedges for serving
(For the beer batter)
- 1 tsp dried yeast
- 1 cup flat beer, at room temperature (plus a little more if required)
- 150g standard flour
- Pinch of salt
- 1 Tbsp oil
Mix yeast in a small bowl with ¼ cup of the beer and stir on and off, squashing the yeast granules with the back of the spoon until soft and nearly dissolved. Add remaining beer. Sift flour and salt together into a warmed basin, make a well and pour in beer and yeast and the oil. Stir until blended (it will look a little lumpy), then leave to rise in a warm spot. It will take 20-40 minutes. The batter should be risen, well aerated and bubbly. (If it is too thick, thin it with a little extra beer; the batter should cling and excess should drip off.)
Heat a good depth of oil to 180°C in a sturdy pot (the oil should come ⅓ of the way up the pot, no higher). Dunk pieces of fish in batter one at a time, letting excess drip off, then carefully lower into hot oil; cook in batches. Cook until golden, flip over and cook the other side. Remove with a large slotted spoon or spatula and drain on a cake rack set over a tray. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve.
Recipes by Julie Biuso @ Shared Kitchen