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I may have lived in this country for almost three decades, but I am yet to acquire the love of the Kiwi classic takeaways of Fish and Chips.  To be honest, I will never salivate at the thought of greasy, chunky fries accompanied by batter engulfed fish dripping with fat, devoured from a paper parcel whilst sitting on a beach. 

That isn't to say that I don't enjoy a picnic meal in the great outdoors.  In fact, the beauty and tranquility of our local beaches, coupled with a rug and a great book, or better still, the company of family and friends, is soul food which satisfies through all our senses. 

So it isn't the environment or even the vessel in which the Fish and Chips are presented that puts me off.  (Okay, perhaps the paper packaging plays a factor too.)  But above all else, it is the mere thought of the food itself that gives me a stomach ache.  The jury is still out on what offends my digestive system more: the greasiness or the gluten, but one thing's for sure, bloating and a migraine are guaranteed to follow.

We all know the benefits of including fish in our diets - but let's face the fact, grilled or steamed pales in comparison to deep fried.  (Don't most things taste better deep fried?)  I also cannot deny the fact that I enjoy French fries as much as the next person - the thinner and crispier the better!

So here is my take on the Kiwi classic... still considered a 'treat', but somewhat healthier than the takeaways version and best of all, doesn't leave those of us with sensitive tummies suffering afterwards.

I like to buy Tarakihi when it's on special.  It has a lovely pink and firm flesh that holds together when sliced into child-friendly strips.

I always sprinkle the fish with salt and can also rhighly ecommend seasoning with lemon pepper before rolling in rice flour.  It is important to pat the flour on firmly - but not to the point of destroying the fish - and shaking off the excess before dipping in egg.  I then roll in gluten-free breadcrumbs before shallow frying in Canola oil.


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Oven baked kumara or potato chips - seasoned at minimum with salt and drizzled with either olive or peanut oil - are the heathiest option.  However, comercially prepared oven fries make a great hassle-free alternative if you're pressed for time or simply do not have enough hands to make your own whilst crumbing and frying the fish.  (Hey, I did say that this was a 'treat' and not one to include as your weekly staple!  Everything in moderation - right?)

What may not be obvious on the image above is that there are less than a handful of fries on the plate, somewhat more fish, and a generous serving of salad.  (May I just boast at this point that the various salad leaves and tomatoes all came from my humble wee vegetable garden?)

Lastly, you cannot have crumbed fish without a good dollop of mayonnaise.  Since low-fat mayonnaise is filled with sugar, my prefered healthier alternative is to mix full-fat mayonnaise with equal parts unsweetend yoghurt.  You still get the cool, tangy, creamy taste sensation - but can be assured that it is better for you.

 

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