Fish & Chips

Tom Aikens, Tom's Kitchen, London, Restaurant Tom Aikens, London - March 2009

For 4 servings

Tartar sauce:

  • 4 lg. egg yolks
  • 1 tsp. English mustard
  • fine sea salt
  • white pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 2 tsps. fresh lemon juice
  • 3 cups canola oil
  • 2 Tbsps. ice water
  • 1 Tbsp. gherkins, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. capers, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. shallots, chopped
  • 1 tsp. fresh parsley, chopped

Whisk egg yolks and mustard in a bowl until pale; season; whisk in vinegar and juice; drizzle in oil, whisking constantly; add ice water as needed to loosen consistency; stir in gherkins, capers, shallots, and parsley; reserve in refrigerator.

Beer batter:

  • 4 cups high-gluten bread flour, sifted
  • 1 1/2 tsps. fine sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. white pepper
  • 1 cup lager beer
  • 1 cup sparkling mineral water
  1. Whisk flour, salt, and pepper in a bowl; reserve.

  2. Mix beer and water in another bowl; let stand 10 minutes; make a well in flour mixture; add beer mixture; whisk until very smooth; reserve.

Chips:

  • canola oil (for deep-frying)
  • 6 Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2" wide bâtons (see note below)
  • 1 qt. water mixed with 1 tsp. sea salt
  • sea salt
  1. Heat oil in deep fryer to 285°F.

  2. Rinse potatoes under cold running water; place in a saucepan; cover with salted water; bring to a boil.

  3. Drain immediately; place in an ice water bath.

  4. Drain potatoes; blanch potatoes in oil 2 minutes; remove with a spider; place on paper towel to drain.

  5. Heat oil to 360°F; cook potatoes until brown and crispy (about 4 minutes); remove with a spider; place on paper towels to drain; sprinkle with salt; reserve (keep warm).

Assembly:

  • canola oil (for deep-frying)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4  1/4-lb. cod fillets
  1. Heat oil in deep-fryer to 360°F.

  2. Place flour in shallow bowl; dredge cod in flour; dip in reserved beer batter; deep-fry until brown and crisp; remove with a spider; place on paper towels to drain; reserve.

  3. To serve, place 1 cod on each plate; pile some chips to one side; serve tartar sauce on the side.

What to drink: hard cider, preferably Weston's
Food Arts Note: Maris Piper is an English potato rated by Great Britain's Potato Council as a 5 on a 1 to 9 scale ascending from waxy to floury.