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Kibbeling met Ravigotesaus (Deep-Fried Plaice Pieces with Ravigote Sauce)

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These deep-fried Dutch fish nuggets, widely sold at seaside stalls and fish shops in the Netherlands, are not to be missed. While most stalls and shops don't disclose what type of fish they use - often overfished flaky white fish varieties, such as cod, whiting or hake - you can make a more sustainable choice when preparing this fish snack at home. Plaice pieces make a nice alternative, and are at their plumpest in the summer months.

This recipe is from Het Nederlands Viskookboek (or 'The Dutch Fish Cookbook'), and has been translated and adapted for this site and published here with the permission of the publisher. The recipe can also be used for kibbeling. The batter is the same; simply use fish fillets seasoned with salt and pepper.

Yield: Serves 4.

Ingredients:

  • FOR THE RAVIGOTE SAUCE:
  • ⅞ cup (200 ml) sunflower oil
  • 2¾ tbsp (40 ml) white wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped chervil
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped tarragon
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped chives
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped capers
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard, or to taste
  • Salt and freshly milled pepper
  • 1 hard-boiled egg
  • FOR THE FISH:

  • 4 thick plaice fillets of around 5 oz (120-160 g) each
  • 2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups (500 ml) whole milk
  • A dash of beer (optional)
  • Salt and white pepper
  • Vegetable/sunflower oil for frying
  • TO SERVE:

  • Ravigote sauce (see above)
  • 1/2 lemon, cut into four wedges
  • YOU WILL NEED:

  • A cutting board
  • A chef's knife
  • A mixing bowl
  • A frying pan, skillet or deep fat fryer
  • A balloon whisk
  • A sieve

Preparation:

TO MAKE THE RAVIGOTE SAUCE:

Beat the oil and vinegar with a balloon whisk. Now add the herbs and Dijon mustard and mix well.

Using the back of a spoon, rub a hard boiled egg through a sieve and stir into the sauce. Season the sauce to taste with salt and freshly milled pepper.

TO PREPARE THE FISH:

Warm the oil in your deep fat fryer to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Or, heat some oil in a frying pan or skillet. To check whether the oil in your frying pan is at the right temperature, stand the handle of a wooden spoon in the oil. If little bubbles form around it, the oil is ready.

Using paper kitchen towels, pat the fish dry on both sides. Season the fillets with some salt and white pepper. Now cut the fillets into bite-sized pieces.

Mix the flour, egg and milk together in a bowl. Dip the fish pieces in the batter using kitchen tongs. Allow the excess batter to drip off back into the bowl.

Carefully place the fish pieces in the deep fat fryer. When the kibbeling have turned golden brown, remove from the fryer and allow them to drain on paper kitchen towels. If frying the fish in a regular frying pan or skillet, remember to turn the fish pieces over halfway through cooking.

Sprinkle the kibbeling with some extra salt, to taste. Serve immediately with the ravigote sauce and lemon wedges.

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