Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Fish and Chips!

So my buddy fully made dinner tonight. Okay, I did the grocery shopping and the recipe part of it, but he definitely manned the fryer while the fish was cooking...

For a couple of weeks now he has been saving an episode of Tyler Florence on our DVR. It was the episode where Tyler made English style fish 'n chips and a shrimp bisque. The shrimp bisque looked sick. I can't wait to make it, but me thinks it does not belong on the same newspaper as my fried cod!

We sat down and watched it together and of course I was sold immediately. First of all let it be known that i am fully obsessed with fried fish. The Filet o' Fish (extra tartar sauce) from McDonald's is one of my favorites. I try to make it to LJS, Long John Silver's, at least once but no more than two times a year. Chances are if you take me to a restaurant and they offer fish and chips on their menu, I'm ordering it. Meal 1 in Hawaii, fish and chips, every time I go to BJ's, fish and chips. I'm fully obsessed.

So seeing Tyler's crispy, golden brown fish was a no brainer. Then he really started speaking to my soul. Of course he made his own tarter sauce. I'm a condiment person. I'd be willing to bet that a solid 1/3 of the contents of our refrigerator is various condiments of one flavor or another. This sauce was so simple, and looked fantastic. Double sold.

So after leaving work early today to take that paddle-footed one to the vet for her shots, I left her in my buddy's oh, so capable hands to make a trip to the seafood market. I always get it confused, location wise, with my meat market. Without fail I drive 30 blocks north on Western before it dawns on me, okay until I saw Kamp's (meat), Avalon is on May. Unbelievable. I dash (as quickly as one can on Britton at rush hour) over to May, skirt death turning left into the fish market and approach the counter for some cod.

Holy lord in heaven. Cod is not tilapia. Cod is apparently the K.C. strip of the sea. 1 lb. of flesh later (literally and figuratively) this cod, which I affectionately named Bindi, and I head to that semi-mythical place of wonder and glory that is known to some as the Belle Isle Wal-mart. Capers, lemon juice (not a single lemon to be found in the store) and other sundries secured I make my way to the manse.

So, dovetailing is not my strength, nor is picking the appropriate sized vessel for my cooking/serving endeavors and this recipe called for a touch of finesse in both departments. I did my best. Oil on, tartar sauce made and marrying, potatoes sliced and par-fried. That isn't a word, but these were double fried, the first round was a lower temp to cook the insides, the second go around is hotter to put a nice crisp on them. Par-fried, like parboiled-but not. Then came the batter preparation, which included soda water.

Enter buddy. I opted to fry outside on our grill as we have a burner on our super hot new grill and I didn't really want to smell like fried oil for the next 8 weeks, but that means also There is no counter space to speak of. He started as the official batter bowl holder but by the end of it he was fully frying fish and transferring it to the hottish oven to hold while we fried the rest up.

15 minutes and some beauty shots later we were settled at the table, Paddlefoot and the Mexican enjoying the Spring evening, ready to dig in. It was pretty delightful.

Kudos to my buddy for dinner tonight. It was super fab.

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