THE SECRET TO PERFECT, HOME-MADE FISH AND CHIPS - The Community Leader and Real Estate New and Views


Local fisherman Spero Kartanos knows his fish, and how to cook them! Here he shares a few insider tips for perfect fish and chips.

We all have our favourite fish and chip shop to have a feed along our beautiful waterfront, but I think nothing beats fresh-caught, home-cooked seafood. Fresh whiting, mackerel, snapper, garfish, mullet, prawns, squid, or even some bought Tassie scallops with the roe on that you cook at home are easy and quick to cook.

I only use light olive oil for cooking – I know people carry on about the heat range, but I have been using it all my life, as did my Mum and Dad before me.

I always use the same old pan, which is now black from all the years of being used.

I cook fish in 3 to 4cm of light olive oil (depending on the thickness of the fish I am cooking) and get it to a temperature that sizzles when you throw a chip in – that means it’s hot enough to cook your fish.

I used to make my own batter with water or beer, but I found the beer held too much oil for my liking and now I only use Japanese tempura batter, with a teaspoon of salt. Just add freezing cold water to the tempura batter to make it thin or thick (I like it thin). To cook perfectly, the trick is to have the pan hot and the tempura icy cold and don’t overcrowd the pan. The taste is fantastic!

When it comes to chips, I do like home-cut chips from fresh potatoes, but I have to say for convenience sake, frozen thick/thin are pretty good. Just add salt and malt vinegar with a pickled onion (in brown vinegar, I am old-school). To make a really great meal, add some aioli and home-made chilli jam.


Photos: Spero Kartanos.

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