Tangelo Fish & Chips with Yam Fries and Haricots Verts

June 2, 2011 § Leave a comment

E: We haven’t posted in a while now. I’ve been terribly busy because of my graduation, and Joanna came up to attend. We ended up not posting when we were supposed to, though we did make an excellent celebratory dinner that will be posted some time soon.

What I have for you here is, to be honest, a bit disappointing–I made a last-minute choice to bake the pieces of battered fish rather than fry them in obscene quantities of oil, and the batter was clearly not meant for that. The breading came out odd and rather tough (and ended up looking like a dog biscuit to boot). But don’t let that discourage you. I (think I) know what needs to be done to fix it:  either use a different breading designed for baking, or fry it like you are supposed to. The breading was tasty, just texturally awful. But, to be totally honest, these were the best pan-fried fries I have ever had, as well as the best Asian sauce for green beans that exists, to my knowledge, in the observable universe. So, though this is “primarily” about the tangelo fish & chips, they should not be the main focus here.

focus on the stuff in the bowl

A word about tangelos:  this recipe was originally going to be made with ugli fruit. Joanna gave me the instruction to use them for our mini-ICA sort of challenge. But I couldn’t find any in my area, so I made do with some tangelos. They tasted pretty much like oranges to me. Try some, but if you can’t find them don’t be afraid to substitute oranges or tangerines.

Here are the ingredients for each part of this recipe. I made everything up off the top of my head except the batter for the fish, which came from Alton Brown, with a few changes to fit the tangelo theme.

Battered cod: (if you don’t have cod, use pollock, tilapia, haddock)
1.5 tsp ginger
1.5 tsp tangelo zest
1/4 cup tangelo juice
small dash of soy sauce (optional)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt (omit this if you use the soy sauce)
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 bottle brown beer, cold (I used Guiness, because I have a surfeit of it at present)
1 1/2 pounds cod
Cornstarch, for dredging

Asian haricots verts:
Several hand-fulls green beans
1/8 cup tangelo juice
1/8 cup soy sauce
1 tsp brown rice vinegar
1 tsp honey or to taste
pepper to taste
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp water mixed with 1/2tsp cornstarch
Toasted sesame oil for cooking
Toasted sesame seeds for garnish

Yam fries:
1 hannah yam
1 jewel yam
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
olive oil, for frying (several tbsp)

Battered Cod

First, work out how you intend to cook these. I’d get a pan set up with a decent amount of frying oil, and start it heating (unless you have a bespoke fryer, in which case I envy you). If you insist on baking these, I did 425F for about 25 minutes. But as I said, this batter did not behave well when baked.

prepare the tangelos and the stuff for the batter

Prepare the ingredients for the batter. Slice, juice, and zest the tangelos. Cut up some ginger, and mince it. Add the dry ingredients and the tangelo zest and minced ginger to a large mixing bowl. Whisk together so that everything is uniformly distributed. Then pour in the beer, the tangelo juice, and the dash of soy sauce if you are using it. Mix together to form a batter, and whisk until smooth (it will be very sticky, perhaps too sticky, but you’d have to ask Alton Brown about that).

the batter, mixed together

Refrigerate this for about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, get out the fish, rinse it, and cut it into serving-sized pieces.

use your judgment on the size of these pieces

Dredge each piece in cornstarch, and then coat with batter. If your batter is as thick as mine was, you’ll find this very difficult, but it was possible.

that took a lot of work, getting those covered

Cook these in your method of choice. Congratulations, you have fish that is probably better than mine.

Asian Haricots Verts

So, you’ve gotten this far. These are easy, quick, and I will be making them again shortly because they were just so good. I wanted some sort of green vegetable I could serve with fries, and these were just the ticket. The flavors melded very nicely with the overall Asian slant on an English classic.

Wash the haricots verts and cut off the ends.

set these aside to drip off

Set those aside, and make the sauce for them. Basically, just mix everything except the cornstarch and water together in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk the cornstarch and water together in a smaller bowl.

the two parts of the sauce

Then you can add the cornstarch slurry to the rest of the sauce and whisk together. Your sauce is now ready to be cooked. You can either thicken it up in a separate saucepan and pour it over the finished product, or add it to your green beans when they are just a few minutes away from being done. In either case, put some toasted sesame oil (about a tablespoon, for the amount of beans I used) into a frying pan, and cook the beans until they are bright green but remain as snappy as you would like them. Serve with thickened sauce, sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds.

Yam Fries

Okay, these were the second-best thing here, and are probably the easiest to make. Peel the yams, and cut them into thick strips, like so:

I love these fries so much

Get out a big frying pan. Add a generous amount of olive oil (I used about 2-3 tbsp), and heat on high. When the oil is hot, add the fries, toss in some salt and black pepper, and drop a frying screen down over the pan. These will spit a bit. Cook on medium-high or high for 15 minutes or more. How long will really depend on how much heat you use. You want them fully-cooked, and at least two sides of each fry should be nicely blackened. Like in this photo (I didn’t intend the zoom-y radial blur effect at all, but once I saw it when checking over the photos, I knew this had to go up).

ZOOM! these fries are from outer space

Lay the finished fries on a few paper towels and let some of the oil get soaked up. Serve with additional salt and pepper if necessary.

The finished product looks something like this:

clockwise, starting with the tangelo slice: 8, 9, 10, and 4 out of 10

Serve with a tangelo wedge in the place of the traditional slice of lemon. Enjoy! And I hope your fish comes out better than mine. I’m determined to re-try this, pan frying the fish in a few inches of oil. When I do so, I’ll let everyone know how it went.

Happy eating.


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