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Fish and chips

Fish and chips is deep-fried fish in batter and deep-fried potatoes, a popular take-away food originally from the United Kingdom, but also popular in the United States and elsewhere.

The fried potatoes are called chips in British usage; while American English calls them french fries, the combination is nonetheless called fish and chips even in the US. (Potato chips, an American innovation, are an entirely different food, known as crisps in the UK.)

Eating deep-fried fish became popular in London and the south-east in the middle of the 19th Century (Charles Dickens mentions a "fried fish warehouse" in Oliver Twist) whilst in the north of England a trade in deep-fried "chipped" potatoes developed. It is unclear when and where these two trades were merged to become the fish and chip shop industry we know today.

In the UK, the chips are often served with malt vinegar or onion juice. (In many cases something called "non-brewed condiment", which is actually a solution of acetic acid in water with caramel added for colour, is used as a substitute for genuine malt vinegar.) They are typically salted but this can usually be varied according to requirements. Another popular dressing is ketchup, though many chip shops charge extra for this. Often mushy peas are added. Fish and chips are traditionally packaged with an inner white paper wrapping and and outer insulating layer of printed or unprinted newspaper, but today polystyrene packing is sometimes encountered. In the US, malt vinegar (or, in less well-informed establishments, red wine or cider vinegar) is often served with the combination as well, but it is used on the fish rather than the chips.

Tartar sauce is also a common accompaniment. Mayonnaise is popular in Europe and brown sauce in Scotland. A common Canadian preference is for white vinegar on the chips and squeezed lemon on the fish.

The most common fish used for fish and chips is cod, but many kinds of fish are used, especially other White fish such as pollock or haddock[?]. Chip shops also sometimes sell other deep-fried foods, anything from chicken to pineapple.

US fast food Restaurant chains that sell fish and chips include Long John Silver's, H. Salt Fish and Chips[?], Arthur Treacher's, and, in the Pacific Northwest, Ivar's[?]. In the 1990s, the perception within the United States that fish and chips were unhealthy led to a decline in consumption and the financial problems of Long John Silver's and Arthur Treacher's. These brands have been accquired by other restaurants and the current strategy of both of these chains appears to be combining fish and chips with other brands to create the concept of fun food.

In the UK, fish and chips are usually sold by independent restaurants and take-aways colloquially known as chippies (chippie is a pejorative term for a prostitute in American English), but there is one well-known chain based in the north of England called Harry Ramsden's[?].

The pronunciation of fish and chips is a traditional method of distinguishing Australians and New Zealanders (see New Zealand English).

See also the Wikipedia Cookbook, Potato chips.

External Link

Harry Ramsden's (http://www.harryramsdens.co.uk)

All Wikipedia text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

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