Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Gourmet food.

Not having had fish 'n chips since 2008, a delicacy that is hard to find in the Heart of Europe, I was delighted to have this fine meal served to me a few weeks back, even if we did have to go and get it ourselves.  The fish 'n chip place where we collected our dinner had been awarded prizes for being so good and just the smell of chips being fried up next to the battered fish soon had me drooling as I watched the rather pale chips being served up.

A girl in front of us had an easy order so was served up first.  She had ordered chips and cheese.

Chips and cheese.

I thought I had misheard until I saw the woman behind the counter get out a large container of grated Cheddar cheese and pour a generous quantity into a polystyrene pot, put the lid on and tucked it in with the chips before wrapping the bundle up.  I looked on incredulously as no one - no one - eats chips with grated cheese on as a meal.  It simply isn't right.

We got home to enjoy our own meal of fish 'n chips, with malt vinegar, as you should, only to find that the chips had only been fried once and were pretty awful for some innocent victim who is used to a decent sized chip, fried twice and only after she has made her order so that they are piping hot and crisp.  Moving to England is proving difficult after having lived 25 years in the Land of Beer, Frites and Chocolate. The fish, however, melted in our mouths and was well worth the money, but in all seriousness, the chips should have been binned.

Richard, however, informed me that chips and cheese is totally normal around here, "not that disgusting mayonaise that 'you' lot smear all over your chips."  He further went on to tell me that chips and curry ia also a delicacy here, as is chips and gravy.

Chips and gravy?  Tell me it's not true.


Guyana-Gyal said...

Chips and ketchup. That's how it should be served.





DOLLOPS of ketchup.

With a sprinkling of pepper sauce.

Heather said...

Chips and Gravy or Curry Sauce is delicious, depending on where you get them, but I do draw a line at Cheese and Chips!!

johng said...

Chips'n'cheese is good. Gravy is a must, but not with fish. Mayonnaise is crap, it's like eating chalk dust!

Tilly said...

I love chips with Mayo (though only oven chips, not fried ones). I have recently started to eat cheese and chips - you don't really get it in the chip shops here, but when we used to visit the in laws in Worcester, they all had it down there.

I actually remember the first time I had mayo. And pizza, and garlic bread. My mum was a very 'traditional Irish' cook - everything in one pan, and either fried or boiled until it was inedible.

Mayonnaise was like manna to my poor undeveloped tast buds.

Will definitely have to arrange a meet up - I will bring polishes too. :)

Richard said...

Although I have lived here for many years now, I am still a southerner so have never ever had chipsengrehveh or chipsencurreh. Chipsenchayse is only chips au gratin and therefore continental. Get over it girl.

Anonymous said...

You have to try chips with chili and cheese. An American invention, sold by a franchise called Wienerschnitzel in California. My kids used to love that stuff.

Zimmer said...

Chow Mein and Chips!

(Mr Lee's , Eccleshall Road, Sheffield, circa 1971-4).

Blazing said...

Chips and gravy. Urgh. You really are in the north, aren't you.

Sigivald said...

All chips ("fries", in fact) need is salt.

Aioli if you're stuck in Belgium or something.

Sharon J said...

Was this the one on Alton Street? His chips aren't much to get excited about but the fish is absolutely gorgeous. Fried to perfection.

LM usually has chips and gravy. I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole myself. But then unless I know the gravy hasn't come out of a packet, I won't go near it anyway.

Zoe said...

Chips with salt and mayo. Or ketchup.

Tilly - definitely.

Richard - chipsenchayse is NOT continental. You're so British.

Anon - that sounds.....filling:)

Sigivald - garlic sauce is great too.

Sharon - no idea, but the chips were dire:(

Mr. Nighttime said...

Hate to break the news to you, but I always have my chips with beef gravy...except when having them with fish, as I then use ketchup. As for cheese, while I don't like it, chips with melted cheese is big here too. they refer to them as "cheese fries."

And yeah, chips with mayo? Ugh, how disgusting can you get!

WrathofDawn said...

Not only chips and gravy, but chips, DRESSING* and gravy are considered a delicacy on this here side of t' Atlantic. With fried onions.

And from Qu├ębec, we have the unfathomable poutine**.



a said...

Chips and cheese was invented by the Lorelei cafe in Brighton in 1968, so its been around for a bit. Chips 'n gravy, chips 'n curry sauce, or half-and-half start in Watford and reach up to Glasgow. The soggy chip problem can be resolved by doing the second fry yourself when you get home. I believe that in Amsterdam, mayo is known as frittersause.

Vincent: " know what they put on French fries in Holland instead of ketchup?"

Jules: "What?"

Vincent: "Mayonnaise."

Jules: "Goddamn!"

Vincent: "I seen 'em do it. And I don't mean a little bit on the side of the plate, they fuckin' drown 'em in it."

Jules: "Uuccch!"

- Pulp Fiction

Anonymous said...

Chips and gravy's not that different from chips and stoofvlees!

urban_fox said...

Have to admit that I am a fan of chips and gravy and chips and curry sauce even though I am a born and bred Londoner. Cheesy Chips (as they are known in these parts) can be quite tasty.

A local chinese of my mum's used to do chips with their version of gravy (think it was also known as BBQ sauce). They were the best.

Do they do deep fried mars bars in Crewe or do you have to go further north for them?

MarkG said...

In my experience, Crewe's always been dead good for kebabs, too. The really sweaty kind.

Still n'all, you're always assured of a warm welcome at the Premier Inn.

Richard said...

Are you due back any time, Mark?

Mr. Nighttime said...

a - I was thinking about that scene myself while reading the post!

Anonymous said...

I'm fussy, and usually eat my fries (your chips) with just salt. Sometimes seasoned salt, or ketchup, or malt vinegar if I'm in the mood. Once had them very lightly salted and sprinkled with grated Parmesan and some oregano in an Italian-themed restaurant. They weren't bad, but I wouldn't go out of my way to get them.

As for Cheddar? I've had cheese fries and the stuff put on them may have some Cheddar in it -- but usually tastes like equal parts motor oil, bad yogurt, and salt. I wouldn't buy them even for my idiot brother-in-law, the one who is quite happy drinking the cheapest beer on sale at the gas station, even if it was sitting in the summer sun all day. Good Cheddar is probably best put to other uses than on fries.

Anonymous, too

lom said...

cheese chips and salad cream, chip and gravy sandwhich and chips and peanut butter, you can't bet it.

Zoe said...

Some people have absolutely no taste in food whatsoever.

Krimo said...

Wait till you discover Potato Skins with garlic mayonnaise?
They're so popular up here that we throw the potatoes away and keep the skins!
Great to ketchup with you again, Z! x

Hannah Joy Curious said...

Chips and cheese? That's the vegetarian special! Much fun to be had if you decide to experiment with different cheeses, although it is a bit of a mess trying to eat them with your fingers... It's an ode to grease basically.

Anonymous said...

how come they all don't simultaneously die of massive heart attacks?

Bart said...

Chips with mayo sounds disgusting to barbarians (=non Belgians) because mayo outside of Belgium is sugary over-sweet crap. But here in the home country of great food, it is delicious.

In (southern) Holland they serve the worst crap: War chips (frietje oorlog) or chips with peanut sauce. Now you know why Belgium declared itself independent from those bastards in the 1830s.

Mr VeryVeryBored said...

It is the malt vinegar bit that seems to confuse the international community. Many times (particularly in Australia, and frankly they should know better since we used to own their ass) I have been met with either a blank look or white wine vinegar when asking for for vinegar to go with chips. Fish, chips, vinegar, salt ketchup - they go together like rama lama lama ke ding a de dinga a dong. Fact.

Judy said...

When my Canadian uncle asked for fries and vinegar in Brussels he was banned , never ever able to enter this country again.

Catherine said...

Gourmet chips and cheese! :)

canvas pictures said...

Judy! LOL

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