Lemon Sole and Triple Cooked Chips

Lemon Sole and Triple Cooked Chips


My name is Phil and I’ve had a problem for about 8 years now (no, it’s not that).  It’s that I’m English (no, not that either) and I hate chips.

Actually… that’s not entirely true, I like chips a lot. What I mean is normally, if I’m out in a restaurant I avoid them, mainly because they’re invariably bad, but also because there’s so much more choice now out there in terms sides dishes. I feel like I’m copping-out.

Since Heston Blumenthal made his way onto our screens though, dry-icing cream, morphing meat and triple cooking his chips, I’ve noticed a bit of a renaissance. In fact ‘proper’ or ‘hand-cut’ chips are increasingly being highlighted as selling points on the typical gastro-pub menu. That’s good then I suppose but also, it isn’t, as making chips from scratch is hardly a Michelin starred pursuit in the first place. How low had we gone in culinary terms that we had to, and still do, buy them pre-made and frozen?

Of course I’m not talking about the good old British Fish ‘n’ Chip shop, keep up the good work fellas…

And so, I thought I’d give Heston’s triple cooked chips a go in pursuit of bettering my culinary knowledge. This is a shortened version as to be honest, his recipe calls for a process taking around 3 hours all in all. I don’t like chips that much….

The result was actually very good I’m pleased to say – they had a nice crunch

For this Helen managed to get hold of some freshly caught lemon sole (one of my favourites) and  I did very little to this as it doesn’t need it. To counter the oil – a nice bean salad, same as I did for the mackerel. I had a lot left….

Lemon Sole

Serves 2

  • 2 lemon sole fillets
  • flour for dusting
  • 3 or 4 Maris Piper potatoes.
  • Oil – enough for deep frying
  • Salt and Pepper
  • A side salad of your choice

Start by making the chips. Peel the potatoes and slice into 3/4 inch or 2cm square batons. Try to trim the potatoes into nice square shapes first to keep them all even sized (you can cook the off cuts – I hate waste too!) Rinse very well to remove the excess starch.

Place in a pan of cold water and bring to a boil for about 15 minutes (Heston says 20-30, but I’m not that brave). They should be soft, almost breaking, but keeping their shape.

IMG_8405 (1)

Drain and leave to cool completely by an open window on a plate in a single layer.

Make up the side salad and pour some flour onto a plate for dusting the fish later – season well.

Heat the oil to 130°C/270°F and add the cold chips. Fry gently for about 5-10 minutes, until just about cooked on the outside. Remove and again, leave to cool by the window, same as before.

Finally heat the oil to 180°C/360°F and finish the chips off until nice and golden.

Just as they go back in, dust the fish in seasoned flour and fry in a little oil, mostly on the skin side, until just done. Take out the pan and keep warm. Serve them all together, with a little extra salt and vinegar. Lovely.




12 thoughts on “Lemon Sole and Triple Cooked Chips

  1. That sole reminds me of Julia Child – in a good way, it looks delicious. The chips look excellent too!
    On thing Heston doesn’t say, which should be stressed is, don’t put hot food in the fridge or freezer. Make sure it is cold first, otherwise it warms up the fridge or freezer and allows bacteria to grow 😉

    • Thanks MD. Chips did work out well even without the hours of cooling..

      I must admit that is very true – maybe he forgets we don’t all have industrial strength blast chillers at home 😉

  2. Your fish and chips look great, love the sole, such a change from the standard haddock or cod. I hardly ever eat chips these days, I did try double cooked HFW chips and they were a complete disappointment, so may be encouraged by your ideas to try again. I usually do home cooked ‘oven chips’ (skin on) with varying success e.g. With pollack and chips last weekend. Thanks, T

    • Thanks very much! Likewise, really, it’s very rare I make them at home. This worked nicely though You’ve just got to be a bit of stickler with the temperature (I should have mentioned that) or they can just burn before they’re properly done I find…

  3. Pingback: Porcini Risotto, Parmesan crisps and Poor Man’s Caviar. | Food, frankly

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