Friday, August 30, 2013

Family Recipe Friday - Fish and Chips

From Parade (date unknown)

OK...my mom didn't make the chips...at least not as far as I can remember.  While I was home this summer I was looking through mom's recipe books and we talked food.  She made her beer batter dipped fish and showed me the clipping that she had originally gotten the recipe from.  I hated fish when I was a kid.  Always afraid of finding a bone and just all-around not enjoying it much.  The only fish I would eat was this recipe and tuna.  My mom would always use her fingers to feel for bones so I knew eating her fish would be a bone-free experience...thanks, mom!

I've posted about this recipe before, but now that I have a copy of the clipping I wanted to share the whole thing (including its origins).

"From London With Love
by Beth Merriman
Parade Food Editor

Our British cousins have discovered the joys of hot dogs and hamburgers.  American tourists have returned from London with equal enthusiasm for fish and chips.  We think a kitchen party featuring this fare would be a hit with everyone.

To make the 'cornets,' as the English call the newspaper cornucopias in which they serve the fish and chips, we found it amusing to use comic strip pages.  Line them with aluminum foil, roll into cones and secure with transparent tape or staples.  With a little practice you'll discover the right size for individual portions.  Stuff a little paper toweling into the bottom of each before putting in the hot fish and chips.

Serve hot malt vinegar from a sprinkle bottle, salt and - to please American palates - catchup.  Beer for adults, root beer for the younger crowd, fun for everyone.

2 packages (about 12 ounces each) frozen fish fillets
or
1-1/2 pounds fresh fish fillets*
2 eggs, separated
1/2 cup beer
1/4 cup milk
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/4 teaspoon seasoned pepper
1 bag (2 pounds) frozen french fried potatoes

*Any firm white fish, such as sole, flounder, haddock, cod, whiting, etc

Partially defrost fillets so they can be separated.  Cut into pieces about 3" x 1-1/2".  Place on paper towels to dry.  Beat egg yolks until thick and light.  Blend in beer, milk, flour and seasonings.  Mix until smooth.  Beat egg whites stiff but not dry; fold in.  Pat fillets dry.  Dip into batter, a few pieces at a time; lift out and drain slightly with fork or slotted spoon.

Fry in deep fat heated to 375 degrees for two to three minutes, or until golden brown and puffed.  Drain on absorbent paper.  Meanwhile heat french fried potatoes as directed on package.  Serve fish and french fries together in 'cornets,' as described above.

Makes six servings.

From Parade' test kitchen"

Hmmm...I don't think I'd use staples to secure anything that my food was going in.  Perhaps that's just me.  I don't remember mom making the "cornets" either, but it's not too surprising because such a detail would have gone completely unappreciated by my dad and us kids.  I'm familiar with seasoned salt (I use Lawry's all the time, but I think mom just used regular salt), but I'm not so much familiar with seasoned pepper.  Not really a crisis or anything.  Use what you prefer and they'll be just as yummy!

I found the references to food sharing between Americans and the Brits insulting amusing.  Seriously, if the only thing we get from such an ancient culture is fish and chips, and the only thing we have to offer are hot dogs and hamburgers we're definitely missing out!  And using the funnies for the "cornets"?  Puh-leez.  Cute idea?  Yes, but hardly a requirement.

I've matured since then and really enjoy fish.  I can only hope that my kids learn to enjoy things that they don't appreciate now.

And I hope the next time you get a craving for some good fish, you'll give this recipe a try.

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