1.5kg Agria potatoes
3 Tbsp cornichons
1 Tbsp capers
½ red onion
500g cod fillets
¼ iceberg lettuce
2 beefsteak tomatoes
2 large gherkins
4 soft burger buns
50g butter, for spreading
100ml tomato relish
Flaky sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
2lt clean canola oil
1 cup typo 00 flour
180g ‘00’ flour
25g tapioca starch
2 tsp baking powder
1 x 330ml can cold larger
1 cup of ice
Every year, restaurants across the Capital get involved in whipping up recipes for Garage Project presents Burger Wellington, part of the Visa Wellington on a Plate annual food festival. For 2022, Capitol served up the Act of Cod.
Chef and co-owner Tom Hutchison says “when we planned this burger, we went straight to the heart; to the burger that brings a sentimental tear to your eye; the burger you would choose for your last meal on earth. Act of Cod takes us back to our childhoods when cod was super plentiful”.
He also shares his personal top tips for making this dish perfect.
“We’re using ice and cold beer because the cold shrinks the glutens and makes a better batter. It’s best when you take the time to whip up your own mayo and, ideally, prepare the potatoes the day before.”
1. Peel the potatoes, bring them to a simmer in a large pot of cold water and cook, uncovered, on a low heat for about 15 minutes until just tender. Strain and leave to cool until they can be hand-torn apart, then leave in the fridge.
2. Finely chop the cornichons, capers, red onion and stir through the mayonnaise. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
3. Heat the canola oil to 180 °C in a large high-sided pot or deep fryer. Line a plate with a tea towel to absorb excess oil. Fry the chips in batches until they are lightly golden and allow them to cool. Turn down the oil.
4. To make the batter, first sift the flour, baking powder, and tapioca starch into a bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour the ice, unmelted and dry, into it. Pour the cold beer over the ice and whisk until the lumps are gone but don’t over mix. Strain the batter through a sieve to remove the ice, cover and place in the fridge for 10 minutes.
5. Wash the lettuce, slice tomatoes to 4ml slices, slice the gherkins, halve the buns. Warm a grill for the buns.
6. Portion the fish into 4 x 125g fillets, retrieve the batter and pour a cup of flour into a plate.
7. Bring the oil back up to 180 °C, warm the oven to 100°C. Batch fry the chips again, strain, salt well, and place in the oven to keep. To fry the fish, dredge each fillet through the flour, coating well, then dredge it through the batter, and place gently into the hot oil. Fry for about four minutes then remove, strain, season well.
8. Toast the buns on the char-grill and butter. To assemble the burgers spread tomato relish on the bottom bun and pop lettuce leaf on top. Stack up your battered fish, a few slices of tomato, a few gherkins and lashings of tartare sauce. Finally, the top bun.
Recipe by WOAP: Capitol’s Act of Cod
Photo credit: Visa Wellington on a Plate