The Irish pub staple at home.
4 russet potatoes, peeled
Canola oil, for frying
3 cups cake flour
3/4 cup cornstarch
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
4 cup very cold club soda
Fine sea salt
4 6 oz pieces pollock, no more than 1/2" think, pinbones removed
All-purpose flour, for dusting
Step 1: Ready the chips. To steady the potatoes on the cutting board, slice 1/2" off each lengthwise to create a flat edge. Flat sides down, cut the potatoes lengthwise into 1/2" slices and then cut the slice into 1/2" sticks. Cut the trimmed edges into batons, too; they will be smaller than the others and get extra crispy.
Step 2: Transfer the potatoes to a bowl of water and soak overnight at room temperature.
Step 3: The next day, prep your workspace. Fill a counter top fryer or 6-quart heavy casserole with canola oil and preheat to 300°F. Line a baking sheet with a double thickness of paper towels and place a wire rack over another baking sheet.
Step 4: Dry the potatoes. Drain the potato sticks in a colander and dry them thoroughly on a cotton kitchen towel. This will keep them from spattering in the hot oil.
Step 5: Fill the fryer basket with potatoes and blanch them at 300°F for 10 minutes, shaking the basket occasionally, until they turn pale brown. (If you are using a casserole, add and remove the potatoes with a mesh spider.)
Step 6: Transfer the blanched chips to the paper towel-lined baking sheet and turn off the fryer (don't empty it). Refrigerate the potatoes for at least 1 1/2 hours.
Step 7: When the potatoes have chilled, preheat the fryer to 350°F and the oven to 180°F.
Step 8: In a large bowl, whisk together the cake flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt; add the club soda and whisk until smooth. Do not overmix. Set aside.
Step 9: Do the second frying. Fry the cold blanched potatoes, shaking the basket occasionally, for 4 minute, until golden brown. Make sure not to overcrowd the basket so the potatoes fry evenly (fry in batches if you need to).
Step 10: Turn the chips out into a large bowl. Season them immediately with fine salt and then transfer to the wire rack on the second baking sheet. Place in the oven to keep warm.
Step 11: Fry the fish. Allow the fryer oil to return to 350°F. Lightly dust the fish fillets with flour and completely immerse them in the batter. Lower the fillets into the oil slowly — do not just drop them in because this can result in splattering oil. Depending on the size of your fryer, you may have to fry in batches; overcrowding reduces the temperature of your oil and produces a soggy product. Fry the fillets until lightly browned on their bottom sides, about 30 seconds. Use tongs to carefully turn the fillets over and continue to fry them for 4 - 5 minutes more, until good and brown. As they come out of the fryer, blot them dry on paper towels.
Step 12: Keep the fried fillets warm on the rack in the oven, next to the chips.
Step 13: Serve "chipper" style by making 4 large cones our of parchment paper and filling each with a fish fillet and a handful of chips.
See more recipes from My Irish Table (2014, Ten Speed Press).
Reprinted with permission from My Irish Table by Cathal Armstrong and David Hagedorn (2014, Ten Speed Press).