The BEST Fish and Chips

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by midlifebear, Feb 9, 2011.

  1. midlifebear

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    OK, food threads seem to bring out the best in us. I've had the Fish and Chips available in London, and have to say they were, well. . . a bit unhealthy as a meal eaten regularly. And the grease factor was a bit much.

    The USA now regards fish sticks of shredded and reshaped pollock the 'Mericuhn standard, which, if given a choice, I would rather eat the grease fest offered in London.

    However, recently I encountered a remarkable version of fish and chips in Val Paraiso, Chile. We entered what was essentially a sports bar attached to a casino where one can bet on anything. There was a sports restaurant attached to the sports casino and on their menu was written -- in EEEnnngleeessh -- Fish and Chips. I figured I didn't have anything to lose. After all, Chile is home to the potato. And we were on the Pacific Coast.

    What arrived was the most delicious take on Fish and Chips I've ever eaten.
    Fresh (as in hours old) Cod had been dipped in a super light, and authentic, tempura batter, then fast cooked in canola oil. The "sticks" were a variety of strip cut blue. gold and white potatoes along with strips of sweet potatoes and yams. The waiter made two dipping sauces at the table: a traditional tomato-based sauce with horseradish including finely minced celery and some other spices and then he whipped up real mayonnaise using one egg yolk whisking in a combination of virgin olive oil and canola oil until he had about a cup of thick hand whipped stuff to which he added chopped pickles, a bit of sugar, salt, vinegar, and sprinkled paprika on top of the finished "tartar" sauce.

    The fish and fries were served up in two different cones -- cost about $16 US. There wasn't a trace of oil or grease in the battered fish which was firm cooked perfectly. And the dipping sauces were very good. Best variation on a tartar sauce I've ever tasted.

    So what is it that the Portuguese serve as fish and chips? It never occurred to me to check any traditional fish except salted cod when I've traveled there.
     
  2. D_Tim McGnaw

    D_Tim McGnaw Account Disabled

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    I'll leave this one to Discoboy, he'll give ya chapter and verse. :wink:


    The stuff you had in London doesn't sound pukka to me. If you've had the real deal cooked in beef dripping rather than oil and the fish straight from Billingsgate and Roe cakes and such I have a feeling you'd be a bigger fan :cool:
     
  3. D_Rosalind Mussell

    D_Rosalind Mussell New Member

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    I grew up in New England on the coast and we have some amazing places for seafood, including Fish And Chips. Those fries you had sound amazing, Midlifebear....now I want seafood. *stomach rumbles*
     
  4. brislands

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    Fish N Chips = Delicious

    Splash in Pismo Beach Ca. Makes good fish n chips and their clam chowder is great!
     
  5. luka82

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    This is better than sex! :biggrin1:
     
  6. midlifebear

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    I, myself, have sampled those very fish and chips. Wrote a piece on the Mystery of the Pismo Clam a few years ago for AmExPubs. And every couple of years, the few friends I still have who are alive (pre AIDS) and I gather for a reading retreat. We reserve several rooms on the fourth floor of the Kon Tiki Inn and do nothing but read, exchange books, eat, beach comb for 10 days -- after the 1st of November. Nothing but sun and perfect beach weather. And the sand dabs on the Steamers' menu, the restaurant next to the Kon Tiki, are the best I've ever had. Slurp. But "Shhhhhh." No one needs to know about how sublime the Central Coast is in October and November. And while I'm still on the subject of Steamers, they have a 3:30 to 6:30 happy hour with double martinis the same as regular martinis -- half off. :smile:

    There's also a greasy spoon within walking distance that has the best crab and shrimp omelette covered in home made Hollandaise that defies description.

    Have yet to find Moondoggy, however.
     
    #6 midlifebear, Feb 9, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2011
  7. accemb

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    The Argyle... Kearny NJ.
     
  8. nudeyorker

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    I discovered this the spot the last time I was in London. It's the best I've had so far. I've had good luck making it at home but this is one of those things I'd prefer someone else mess up their kitchen making.
    The Fish Club | Home
     
  9. DaveyR

    DaveyR Retired Moderator
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    You're right MLB not exactly the healthiest of foods if eaten too often.

    Years ago we lived within walking distance to this one and used to go a couple of Friday's a month after work in the evening. I've never ever tasted better. The fish quay is less than 20 yards from the restaurant and you just can't get fresher fish.

    We're living in the region again but only go now and again in a effort to keep the middle aged spread in check. :redface:
     
  10. D_Lanksesbye Sleepingrawe

    D_Lanksesbye Sleepingrawe Account Disabled

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    The Golden Kitchen in North Harrow is pretty darn good for London fare F&C. Now I'm hungry!
     
  11. The Dragon

    The Dragon New Member

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    There is a little Chippie here that has a display of fresh reef fish fillets and you choose which fillet of which species you like and they have a choice of batters or crumb and they cook it while you wait and watch.

    My favorite is Sweetlip in their lighter than air Beer Batter.
    I also get my chips done in the same batter.
    A huge squeeze of fresh lemon juice and a sprinkling of flaked sea salt and wash it down with a few Crown Lagers.<---A premium Australian beer.

    Bliss.
     
  12. SilverTrain

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    I'm baffled by this. Both the gratuitous overgeneralization, and the face of the assertion as well. I realize you do travel quite a lot. And I grant that I've not been all over the US eating fish and chips.

    Oh, wait, I sort of have. Anyway, there are holes-in-the-wall in quite a number of places that serve up fantastic bits of fried fish and potatoes. Some still wrap the meal in newspaper (and some use that fakey "Generic English Newspaper" wax wrap).

    On the other hand, there's lots of shite fish and chips to be found in the States. I'll grant that.
     
  13. superbot

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    Shouldn't that read "....a premium Australian beer.Piss.?!!"
     
  14. The Dragon

    The Dragon New Member

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    If it was Fosters then yes..that is horse piss in a can.
    Crown is ambrosia.
     
  15. SilverTrain

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    But Paul Hogan says "It's Australian for 'beer'". :wink:
     
  16. The Dragon

    The Dragon New Member

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    Paul Hogan also says "Throw a shrimp on the barbie".....bloody dickhead!
     
  17. SilverTrain

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    Isn't that the Australian National Anthem?
     
  18. DiscoBoy

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    Besides making a pretty standard fish and chips dish (although, generally, I've had fried fish with "salada russa"-- potato salad), the Portuguese also have a dish called "Bacalhau à Brás".

    The cod is soaked in cold water overnight, then skinned, de-boned and ripped into thin slices.

    In a frying pan, pour some olive oil and fry your "chips" until they look cooked (you don't necessarily want them to be too crispy), leaving them to drain in some paper towels.

    In that same pan, add a bit more oil if needed, and proceed to sauté diced onion (or you can leave them as thin half-rings if you prefer), garlic(might want to let the onion cook for a bit before adding the garlic), and any other herb/spice you think would taste good (I'm partial to bay leaves).

    Once the onions have cooked, add the thin slices of cod, making sure to stir well to really soak it in the fat (wooden spoon!). Add the potatoes after a short while.

    As that cooks, whisk several eggs with some salt and pepper (don't be afraid to be generous with the salt/pepper; the Portuguese indulge heavily in both). Add the egg mix as well as some parsley to the fish and potatoes, stirring routinely. The second the eggs look cooked, but still soft, remove the the pan from the heat and you're done.

    Accompany it with some black olives, bread, chouriço, and follow it all up with a nata or two for desert.
     

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  19. The Dragon

    The Dragon New Member

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    Go wash your mouth out with soap!:wink:
     
  20. Drifterwood

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    The problem in the UK is the fact that fish stocks are low and haddock and cod especially are very expensive. This has lead to smaller fillets being compensated with heavier batter. Yuk.

    The secret imo to great fish and chips, is fresh fish, light batter, hot clean light oil and thick cut chips. This is not an unhealthy meal. Liberally apply lemon and a tangy fresh tartar and I am a very contented punter. Wash down with a crisp cool sauvignon or French chardonnay.
     
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