See? Even Guardian readers admit to liking chips in gravy – so that’s alright then! This is an upgraded version with a bit of piccalilli thrown in – so really rather on the healthy side (?).
The Yukon Gold potatoes make fabulous chips..they have a fabulous creamy gold colour, which is gorgeous crisped up in chip form.
We aren’t really chip eaters (but not averse to a bag of fish n chips on the beach near us in Hove)…and Sussex has such brilliant chippies with sea-fresh fish, that we are spoiled for choice really. But when you can buy gorgeous local raw ingredients, this doesn’t feel like a fast food option and is a cosy Friday night in front of the TV meal.
The Guardian recipe here calls for baking potatoes, but really 1kg of any other of your favourite varieties will do. The Yukon Gold, above, is gorgeous because the flesh has a rich colour, but equally, lots of our chef customers opt for Desiree, as it’s a good all-rounder and will cook well with a lovely sweetness in flavour.
Also, sunflower oil is the recommended oil for chipping, but if you’ve ever eaten at Troll’s Pantry, you’ll know Paul cooks his chips in olive oil…whichi is the height of decadent luxury in the world of chips.
4 large baking potatoes, preferably maris pipers (or 1kg of another variety)
Sunflower oil, for deep frying
For the gravy
100g button onions, peeled
2 small carrots, sliced
¼ cauliflower, broken into small florets
2 tsp sugar
700ml vegetable stock
50ml red wine
1 tsp cornflour
Salt and black pepper
1 tsp Marmite
½ tsp English mustard
1 Peel the potatoes then cut into chips. Soak in cold water for a few hours, or overnight if you can, as this will improve the crispness.
2 Add sunflower oil to a deep fat fryer, or fill a large saucepan a third full. Drain the chips and pat dry on a towel, to prevent the hot oil splashing. Carefully add the chips to the oil and fry for around 10 minutes, until golden and cooked through. Keep them warm while you make the gravy.
3 Melt the butter in a saucepan, then add the vegetables and sugar, and cook until brown.
4 Next, add the stock and red wine, then cook until the vegetables are just tender. Mix the cornflour with a little water and add to the gravy to thicken. Finish with the Marmite and mustard, then season.
5 Sprinkle salt on chips and serve with gravy.
One last word on the word of chips and cooking. If you remember the ads from the early 80’s about chip pan fires, then they probably put the fear of god into you too. If you don’t have a deep-fat fryer, then a normal stainless steel pan is fine but just don’t fill it more than one third full of fat. Also keep a beady eye on the pan and if it smokes, it’s too hot – it should just be sizzling hot when the chips go in.
You could keep a damp tea towel handy, just in case (damp though, not wet, as that’s even more inflammatory). Oh, and don’t go off and make a cup of tea and phone a mate while your chip pan is bubbling merrily.