Fish and Chips with Mushy Peas
Hubby always gets fish and chips when we are back in his homeland (and let's face it, at almost every American pub-like restaurant). Basically he's a fish and chips addict. And I like to do thoughtful and nice things for my husband sometimes by trying to make his favorites. He does let me cook whatever I want and always eats it with a smile on!
The main event of this dish was definitely the "fish" (tofu). I think that Avant Garde Vegan's recipe is spot on. I modified it somewhat, as I'm lazy and a bit radical, but it's mostly to his credit.
Plus, the mushy peas add the perfect color + sweetness + texture to the whole fried lot. There's a reason this is such a tried and true trio!
Chunky chips are always tough because the texture has to be so specific -- crispy on the outside but soft on the inside, not too greasy, not too mushy, and just the right size!! Sheesh I'm exhausted just thinking about it! I won't claim to be an expert chip maker but I think these turned out pretty good and chunky after all.
2 russet potatoes, cut into wedges
2 Tbsp flour
salt and pepper
1 block extra firm tofu, drained and pressed, cut into fillets
1 sheet nori (seaweed)
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup arrowroot powder
2/3 cup soda water (or sub 1/3 cup soda water + 1/3 cup vegan beer if desired)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 bag frozen peas
1 cup vegetable stock
2 Tbsp lemon juice
salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a mixing bowl, toss potato wedges with flour until evenly coated. Line wedges up on parchment paper so that they aren't touching, and drizzle with olive oil, salt, pepper. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and a bit crispy on the edges.
Meanwhile, place enough oil in a deep skillet to cover your "fish" and heat over medium high heat. Cut the nori into the same shapes as your tofu and place on top to cover each fillet (that's our crispy "fish skin"). Sprinkle the nori with lemon juice and press down to adhere it to tofu, and set aside. In a mixing bowl, make batter by whisking together flour, arrowroot powder, pinch of salt, and soda water. Let sit for a few minutes to thicken.
Next, to make the mushy peas, add 2 Tbsp olive oil to a medium skillet over medium high heat. Saute onion until translucent. Add peas, vegetable stock, pinch salt, and lemon juice and bring to a simmer for 2-3 minutes. Mash using a potato masher until it reaches desired consistency. Keep peas warm while you finish the fish.
Once oil is hot, dip tofu fillets into the batter and carefully lower into the oil. Fry for about 5 minutes or until batter is golden brown. Drain on paper towel and sprinkle with salt. Serve with chips and mushy peas, and vegan tartar sauce if you wish!
Serves 2 generously!