An Asian Twist to a British Classic
Chilli and Ale Battered Cod and Chips, Lime and Coriander Peas, with a Spiced Apple Curry Sauce
This is one of my favourite recipes. One from the archives. Chilli and Ale Battered Cod and Chips seemed like a good idea but I wasn’t completely sure it was going to work… However, it did and so much better than I could have hoped for. There’s nothing more satisfying as a home cook than when you try something different and it comes off! Great for a family meal or to wow your friends.
Of course this dish was produced with local ingredients wherever possible and a special mention has to go to Dorset Shellfish for supplying the fresh sustainably caught cod.
For the Curry Sauce
You’ll want to get this one done at the start, as you’ll be busy with the time sensitive stuff in the hot oil later on…
- 1tbsp oil
- ½ onion, finely diced
- 1 apple, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- ½ tsp curry powder
- 1tbsp plain flour
- 150 ml chicken stock
- Black pepper (to taste – I like to go heavy with it for this sauce)
Heat the oil in a deep frying pan, and add the onion, apple and garlic. Cook over a low heat for 5-10 minutes, until everything is very soft. Add the curry powder and flour, and mix well. Then pour over the stock and add plenty of black pepper.
Bring to a gentle simmer, and cook for around 10 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes, until the mixture is thick and the vegetables have cooked right down.
Your sauce will probably be quite chunky, so if you’d prefer a smoother sauce, just give it a quick blitz with an immersion blender. This will thicken it up a bit too. I half-blended mine, so it was quite thick, but there was still some texture.
Serve on fat chips.
- 4 fresh Cod fillets (or similar white fish)
For the batter
- 250g plain flour
- 2 cloves garlic
- Lime Zest
- 1 Red Chilli finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 350ml Ale – I used an IPA (chilled)
- Extra flour for dusting
- Oil for deep frying
- Half teaspoon flaked sea salt
Mix the beer, flour, salt and pepper by whisking together by hand or use a food processor. Finely chop the chilli and and the garlic (or use a garlic crusher). Once mixed the batter should have the approximate consistency of paint. If it is too thin, add some more flour and if it is too thick add some more ale. If you don’t have any left just add some cold water.
Set the mixture aside for at least half an hour before cooking.
Put your oven on and set to 60ºC and get a baking tray ready. You will need to put your cooked fish in there for a couple of minutes while you fry off your chips.
Heat the oil to 190ºC. Once the oil is up to temperature, you are ready to start cooking. Coat the cod fillets in flour and then dip them in the batter. Ensure they are completely covered and transfer them to the hot oil, being careful to avoid splashing yourself. The cod fillet in the picture was from a fairly large fish. This was one of 4 evenly sized fillets that I cooked 2 at a time. You may well be using smaller fillets but you will need to judge from the size of your fryer or pan as to how many fillets you will want to cook at the same time.
Cook the fish for 4-5 minutes until they crisp up and that nice golden colour is achieved. Once cooked, using the tongs, remove from the fish from the oil and put on a plate with some kitchen roll to soak up any excess oil.
- 1Kg Potatoes (Maris Piper or King Edward Potatoes)
I’d recommend using a light fluffy potato for this. Maris Pipers or King Edwards are perfect.
Peel your potatoes and slice them up into chunky chip-shop sized chips. Place them into a pan of cold water with a pinch of salt and parboil them. Bring the water to the boil, turn the heat down low and allow them to simmer for 3-4 minutes. Drain the potatoes into a colander and then dry off on on a paper towel. This will reduce the amount of spitting when you introduce the chips to the hot oil.
Once the cod has been cooked and set aside (in the oven to keep warm for a couple of minutes), and add the chips to the hot oil. Once the chips start to colour, it won’t take long until they’re done so keep an eye on them.
Lime and Coriander Peas
- 4 cups Petite Pois
- Handful of coriander
- 1 lime
- knob of butter
These are extremely easy. Really nothing complicated at all but so effective with the other ingredients on the plate.
I used petite pois. No other reason than I prefer the taste and also the texture. If you were going to make mushy-peas, I would recommend using the larger garden peas. Simply because there is a higher ratio of the mushy middle part to the outer skin.
Boil see water in a pan and once it’s boiling, add your frozen peas. 5 minutes of boiling should do it. Once cooked, drain off the water.
Add a knob of butter and stir it in. Finely chop a handful of coriander and stir it into the peas. Squeeze in the juice of a lime. Season with a pinch of salt and black pepper and stir. Cover the pan and leave while you plate up all the other ingredients. That’s all there is to it.
Plate up and sprinkle a few coriander leaves over for garnish
A home made mildly spicy alternative to a British Classic. In addition to the added spice, the zesty lime and the coriander adds a hint of freshness to the meal and it all works so well together. Maybe a good idea on one of those nights when you can’t choose between a curry or fish and chips.