Sunday, 1 May 2011

Fish, Chips, Mushy Peas and Tartar sauce

I think it's over exposure to the Royal wedding - I've been craving British classics and you can't get much more British than fish and chips.

It's one of those dishes that you salivate over as soon as you see it on a menu: the crispy batter encased around the soft fish; the velvety chips and the sweet peas.  It also invokes the eye bigger than tummy syndrome - you always think you are going to manage the whole fish but the batter will always defeat you.  

I have been thinking about cooking this for a couple of days since sampling some fish battered in Orangeboom beer - stunning flavour, but so rich that you can't eat much of it and I have a very big appetite.

I like to breadcrumb the fish because you can bake it in the oven, which means fewer calories, therefore you can also use a higher calorie fish like salmon - my favorite fish! 

The chips are also baked after being coated in a small amount of olive oil  and the peas are normal frozen peas, boiled then blended with some mint and garlic.

It's actually quite a healthy version of fish and chips, really.  The only really high calorie component is the tartare sauce, consisting of a homemade mayo mixed with pickles.

Serves 4
Pack new potatoes
4 salmon steaks
2 pitta bread
4 eggs
handful fresh mint
half small pack frozen peas
garlic paste
walnut oil
Olive oil
White wine vinegar

Preheat the oven to 200C.  Cut the potatoes as small as you like, toss in approx 1 tablespoon olive oil and a pinch of salt, place on a lined baking sheet and cook for approx 30 mins depending on the size of the chips.

Whilst the potatoes are cooking, pulse the pitta bread with half of the mint and a pinch of salt and pour onto a large plate.  Crack two off the eggs, whisk and pour onto another large plate.

Dip each salmon in the egg mixture, then the breadcrumbs twice then place in the oven for about ten mins before the potatoes are due to come out.

Place the remaining two eggs into a processor with 1/2 tsp white wine vinegar and pulse on a low setting and gradually trickle the walnut oil in, (approx 100 ml). 

When it starts to emulsify, switch to the olive oil and keep trickling small amounts until it reaches the desired thickness. 

At the end, add a teaspoon of garlic puree, chopped pickles and a pinch of salt.  During the whole process, keep testing for seasoning.  Place in the fridge.

In a large frying pan, flash cook the peas on a very high heat for a couple of minutes then place in a processor with garlic, the rest of the mint, a generous glug of olive oil and salt then roughly pulse, (or if by this point you are tired of using the food processor, you could always mash them).



  1. I love fish n chips. My hubs is English so we get it every time we visit - YUM! Thanks for sharing this homemade and healthier version:)

  2. I want this right now. Guilt free chips! Yum.