An easy-to-prepare British staple elevated by the simple and yet overlooked technique of brining, which means that your fish and chips will have more flavour than the standard chippy, regardless of whether you use fresh or frozen cod.
4 cod fillets between 180-250g, skinned and boned
50ml white wine vinegar
Zest of 1 lemon
420g plain flour
330ml quality ale or lager
4 potatoes (preferably white potatoes, such as kennebec), peeled and chopped into chips
Frying oil (we use sunflower seed)
2 shallots, diced
Zest of 1 lemon
1. Preheat a fryer to 130°C. Rinse the chips under cold water to remove the cloudy starch. Pat dry using kitchen towel and fry until a light crust forms, but the potatoes haven’t yet coloured (about 5 minutes), then place in the fridge. If you don’t have a fryer, carefully use a large pan of oil on the stovetop, but do not fill the pan more than halfway.
2. For the brine, place all ingredients, except the ice, into a pan and warm until the salt has completely dissolved. Remove from the heat and add the ice, then mix together until the brine is cold. If still warm, place in the fridge until chilled. Submerge the cod fillets in the brine for 25 minutes, then discard the liquid. Rinse the cod fillets under cold water and pat dry with kitchen towel.
3. For the tartare sauce, chop all the ingredients and add to the mayo. For the beer batter, whisk all the ingredients until smooth.
4. Fry the chips at 180°C until golden. Drain and season with salt. Submerge the fish in the beer batter and remove, allowing the excess batter to drip away and fully coat the fillet. Carefully drop the cod into the oil and cook at 180°C until golden and crispy, about 4-5 minutes or until it reaches 54°C internally.
5. Serve the cod on top of the chips with a large wedge of fresh lemon.