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Fish n' chips, a great Indian delicacy


What's enjoyed as a humble meal in UK, fish and chips is a delicacy in India...

It's a simple dish, usually a hunk of golden pomfret or bakti served with strips of potatoes sprinkled with salt and accompanied with tartar sauce. The National Federation of fish Friers believes the first fish and chip shop was set up in 1860 - which makes 2010 its 150th birthday.

Says foodie and author Esther David, "Whilst the locals prefer the Indian versions, I thoroughly enjoy the bland versions offered in London, because you get the actual taste of the fish when you don't add so many spices to it." Abroad, the fish is mainly marinated in wine, beer and other spices and then crumb fried to order on the menu.

Says restaurateur Rushad Ginwalla, "People in Ahmedabad being predominantly vegetarians, it becomes slightly difficult for multi-cuisine restaurant owners to introduce fish and chips as many non-vegetarian foodies do not enjoy fish if the smell is very strong unlike chicken or mutton."

Says restaurateur Lester D'Souza, "There is a very niche market for this simple yet classic preparation in the city. We add more of chilly paste and pepper to make it more Indian. Unlike the UK which generally offers cod or haddock, we generally give pomfret."

Foodie Ashish Gajjar, who has travelled the world and feels that the best fish and chips are always had best in London or Finland. "After the British, maybe Indians have done a great thing with fish and chips but Americans are to still trying to get it right."

No two ways about it, despite the simplicity, the dish is an icon of British culture, and enjoys its loyal followers in the city.

Tanvi Trivedi | Nov 4, 2011, 12.00AM IST
 

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