Fish and Chips: Improv Blog


How about a nice batch of fish an chips, eh? Chip, chip, cheerio?  Chim chim chimmery?

In my head, this entire post is read with a British accent.  Please oblige me.

Fish and chips have been on my culinary bucket list for a while. So when I saw this month’s Improv Challenge was to make something with fish and chips, I knew I wanted to go the traditional fish and chip route.

So ‘a fish fryin’ we went.  My family and I grabbed some beers and hung out in the backyard while we fried up dinner.  The fish is dipped in a beer batter and fried until flaky and tender.  And the French fries- oh the French fries.  I have baked up some pretty good fries before and even fried a few good batches, but people, hear me when I say, the double fried French fry is where it is at.  They are crunchy, tender, and wonderful.

The best way to enjoy a fish and chip dinner is to clear the dinner table, put down newspaper, and dump it all in the center.  Serve with tartar sauce, ketchup, and vinegar.  Battle it out to get the crispiest fish pieces and French fries . Drink beer.

When we ate our fish and chips, I chose the optimal seat at the dinner table where I got to eat on the newspaper article about Dennis Quaid.


Fish Slightly Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated
Chips Slightly Adapted from The Pioneer Woman


For the Fish:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 pounds cod

For the Chips:
3-4 large Russet potatoes, peeled
Vegetable oil, for frying


For the Fish:

In a large bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, 2 teaspoon salt, cayenne, and paprika.  Transfer 3/4 cup of flour mixture to a rimmed baking sheet. Stir in baking powder to flour mixture in the bowl.

Heat oil to 375°F.

Cut the code into equal, bite sized pieces. Dry with paper towels.  Dredge fish in dry flour mixture. Lay fish on a wire rack.  Stir beer into flour mixture in bowel.  Dip fish into beer batter and let excess drip off. Dredge through flour mixture again.  Fry fish in batch until golden brown, 4-8 minutes depending on size.  Drain on paper towels and salt if desired.

For the Chips:

Cut the potatoes into 1/4 inch wide sticks.  Place in large bowl and cover with water.  Let sit for at least 30 minutes, up to 1 hour.  Drain and pat dry.

Heat oil to 300°F.  Fry potatoes in batches, for 3-5 minutes.  This first fry is to cook the potato, so it should be soft and able to be cut with a knife.  They will not yet be golden brown.  Drain on paper towels.

Heat oil to 375-400°F.  Fry in batches until golden brown.  Drain on paper towels.  Salt while warm.

Serves 3-4.

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11 thoughts on “Fish and Chips: Improv Blog

  1. tspbasil says:

    Oh yum!! I’m yearning to make the traditional and you have just inspired me (and yes, I made sure to read your post in my head in a British accent – blimey, love!)

  2. tumbleweedcontessa says:

    I could do this fish, if somebody else cooked it for me. I’m not into fish, so I’m happy we sort of stretched the rules for this Improv. I’ll have to try your recipe.

    Wishes for tasty dishes,
    Linda@Tumbleweed Contessa

  3. Kristen says:

    I am so glad you went traditional. Sometimes we are so busy trying to think outside the box that we forget how great the basics are. Your version looks great!

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