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Tastemade/Snapchat

Everything You Never Knew About Fish & Chips

Fish and chips: one of vaguest, simplest, and most passive of dishes. Naturally, it’s English. Even the salt and vinegar passed over its crunchy exterior politely compliments the white fish and crisp potatoes, with only a subtle bite in the aftertaste (not unlike most English compliments).

By once having a flag in the ground across the globe, prompting the saying “The sun never sets on the English flag” England and the rest of the Brits did a superb job of exposing billions of people to English, God, and fish and chips.

Who do we thank?

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While the pairing is synonymous with the Union Jack, the individual dishes didn’t originate within British borders at all. Portuguese and Spanish Jews fled to England with their fried fish in the 16th century and frozen Belgian housewives are credited with making the first “French” fries a century later.

Two origin stories compete for the now inseparable combo of fish and chips, but both center around the Industrial Revolution. Whether it was young Joseph Malin in London’s East End or John Lees in Lancashire Might-As-Well-Be-Scotland county, “chippie” shops fed the working class’s growing numbers in the late 19th century.

What the hell is “fish?”

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Historically, cod should be the lucky fish battered and fried to perfection. Considering around 250 million servings of fish and chips are served in the UK alone each year, however, cod fish should be extinct. Luckily, most chippie shops utilize various kinds of white meat fish to keep the mobs at bay.

The Toxic Magic Of Newspaper

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Okay, so the plate of fried fish and fries you get at T.G.I. Fridays is bullshit. Fish and chips were meant to be eaten with a double-pronged fork out of a newspaper cone. In the 1980s a layer of grease paper between the food and the daily headlines became mandatory throughout the U.K., forcing many establishments to do away with newspapers altogether.

Currently, the vast majority of newspaper ink is made from non-toxic soybean materials and there are dozens of companies selling grease paper printed with generic news. But that’s not the point. There’s a certain comfort in watching Taylor Swift’s face or a story about corrupt government officials become saturated with oil. Eating the news is so much better than reading it.

But maybe that’s just what Parliament wants me to do.

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Hit-Or-Miss

Gordon Ramsay’s Secret To Selecting The Freshest Fish [WATCH]

Superstar chef Gordon Ramsay walks a fine line from being a hard-ass, know-it-all culinary bully, to possibly being the nicest man in the food industry.

Regardless of what you think of him, Ramsay knows his stuff and takes the time to inform his audience about how to properly shop, cook and eat like a professional.

This time Ramsay shares his guide to buying fish and it’s actually very useful. Check out his tips below.

The most interesting part of the video is the dialogue from connoisseur fish expert Roger Kent-Barton, a vendor inside London’s Billingsgate Market for more than 50 years, who Ramsay credits for, “always getting the freshest and the best,” when it comes to fish.

“I love fish,” Barton exclaimed with passion. “I could feed you a different fish 365 days a year.”

Barton, who’s accent is reminiscent of “Brick Top” in Snatchexplained how to determine if a fish is fresh, simply by the smell.

“Old fish smells different,” he said. “the longer it’s around the more fishy it will smell,” Barton said. “When it’s lovely and fresh, it doesn’t smell.”

Among other things, Barton suggests that when considering a fish to purchase, be sure to “get your nose right in it and smell it,” and not to be shy when it comes to truly knowing your fish.

Both Ramsay and Barton seem to be impressed with salmon, and enjoy a whole salmon steamed or stuffed, salmon fillets grilled or fried, or smoked salmon which Ramsay says he, “loves with his scrambled eggs.”

When it comes to buying fish — or anything thing — you want to make sure you’re getting the best quality for the best price. If that means getting a little more familiar with your fish before you buy, so be it.

Thanks, Ramsay. This is definitely useful advice.

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Cravings

California Restaurant to Serve Ramen and Black Cod Burrito

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SlapFish, the former food truck turned restaurant, is an Orange County-based seafood establishment in Southern California. The fast-casual restaurant is known for their sea-fresh menu, following the motto, “From Boat to Plate.” SlapFish is taking a page from the recent craze of stuffing ramen into your food with their new Black Cod Ramen Burrito. Ramen got cool again, right?

An Instagram peek gives us a look at the upcoming burrito, which features crispy black cod, lettuce, hot sauce, scallions and, of course, ramen noodles. They’re essentially swapping out rice as a starch and replacing it with ramen noodles. We’re sure this baby is also stacked with other goodies that aren’t noticeable in the video.

Now we’ve seen Ramen Burritos before, but damn if this doesn’t look glorious. We’ll keep you posted when this baby officially comes out.