Fish and Chips

A light, crisp beer batter makes this fish deliciously crispy, perfect for dipping into the tartar sauce made with sweet and dill pickles.

Fried Beer-Battered Fish and Chips with Dilled Tartar Sauce
Photo: © John Kernick
Active Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs

Twice-frying the potatoes in this recipe may seem like extra work, but it's worth it for the resulting crispier French fries. Be sure to cut the potatoes uniformly to the same length and thickness, so they cook at the same rate. The first time you fry them, you won't get much if any color on the potatoes. Blot them dry before frying them the second time, when they will turn brown and crispy — the perfect accompaniment to the fried fish and tangy tartar sauce.


  • 1 1/4 pounds baking potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 1/2-by-1/3-inch sticks

  • Vegetable oil, for frying

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dredging

  • Kosher salt

  • 1 3/4 cups cold lager or pilsner

  • 1 3/4 pounds center-cut skinless cod or haddock fillet, cut into four 6-by-2-inch pieces

  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise

  • 3 tablespoons pickle relish

  • 1/4 cup chopped pickle

  • 1 tablespoon chopped dill

  • Freshly ground pepper

  • Malt vinegar, for serving


  1. Place potatoes in a large bowl and cover with water; let soak for 1 hour. Drain potatoes and pat dry thoroughly with paper towels.

  2. Set a rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Heat 2 inches of oil in a large, wide pot, to 330°F. Add potatoes and fry until tender, about 12 minutes. Using a long-handled wire strainer, transfer potatoes to rack to drain. Let cool for at least 15 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, whisk flour with 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt. Whisk in 1 1/2 cups of the cold beer until batter is almost smooth; it should be a little lumpy. Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Stir in remaining 1/4 cup of beer.

  4. Preheat oven to 350°F and heat oil in pot to 375°F. Add half of the potatoes to pot, and fry until crisp, 2 minutes; transfer fries to rack to drain and fry remaining potatoes. Spread fries on rack, season with salt, and hold warm in oven.

  5. Reduce oil temperature to 325°F. Season fish with salt and pepper. Mound flour in a wide, shallow bowl. Working with 2 pieces at a time, dredge fish in flour, shaking off excess. Dip floured fish in beer batter; allow any excess batter to drip off. Add battered fish to hot oil and fry, turning a few times, until fish is cooked through and batter is richly browned and crunchy, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain fish on rack, lightly blot dry with paper towels and keep warm. Batter and fry remaining fish.

  6. Whisk mayonnaise, sweet pickle relish, chopped pickle, and chopped dill in a small bowl. Season tartar sauce with salt and pepper and chill until ready to serve. Serve fish and chips hot with malt vinegar and tartar sauce.

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