RECIPE: Josh Niland's fish and chips

Josh Niland's fish and chips from the new cookbook, Dish.

Dish is a one-of-a-kind, limited edition cookbook supporting the Starlight Children’s Foundation. Featuring 86 recipes by 44 of Australia’s best chefs, all proceeds go to brightening the lives of seriously ill children and their families in Australia through hospital programs and experiences.

Josh Niland of Saint Peter was one of the first chefs to get involved in the project, contributing two recipes: fish and chips; and almond meringue with white peach caramel.

Niland has a special connection with the Starlight Children’s Foundation when he was diagnosed with Wilms tumour, a rare kidney cancer, as a child.

“As an eight-year-old in hospital I was granted a wish that turned a terrible chapter of my life into one of my most memorable experiences," says Niland.

"Starlight flew my family and I to the USA to watch the Chicago Bulls play - every kid’s dream! The trip gave us a chance to laugh and take a break from a stressful time in our lives.

“For this I am forever in debt to Starlight and any way I can give back, I will. Dish is a great way of sharing my love of food and the foundation with fellow foodies.”

Serves 4 to 6 

210 g self raising flour
400 g rice flour
10 g baking powder
45 g honey
345 ml vodka 37%
550 ml beer
1 fillet pink ling, approx 600 g
3kg sebago potatoes
5 L cottonseed oil
300 g natural yoghurt
80 g (2 large) eschalotts, diced
80 g cornichons, diced
80 g tiny capers in brine
Table salt for seasoning


  • To prepare the pink ling, start by slicing even thick medallions from the skinless fillet and set onto a square of paper towel in readiness to flour and batter.
  • For the potato chips, preheat a large saucepan of cottonseed oil to approximately 140 °C. Scrub Sebago potatoes thoroughly, leaving the skin on and cut in to index finger width and length batons, soak in cold water to remove some of the potatoes starches that can sometimes colour inconsistently when deep frying.
  • Add drained and dried potato chips in small batches to the 140°C oil and cook without colour for approx 9-10mins until the flesh of the potato has blistered and small bubbles begin to appear along the surface. Drain from the oil and allow to cool and slightly dry on a wire rack in the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour.
  • To make the tartare sauce, combine natural yoghurt with diced shallot, cornichon & capers. Mix well and keep covered in the fridge until serving.
  • For the batter, whisk the flour, rice flour and baking powder together in a large bowl. Measure the honey and the vodka into a measuring jug and mix together. Pour the honey and vodka solution into the flour, then measure the beer using the same measuring jug. Whisk all ingredients together and store in a large bowl. If the batter becomes too thick add a little more beer.
  • Increase the temperature of the oil to 180°C and fry the par cooked chips again until very crisp and golden. Approximately 5-6mins. Drain well and season with fine table salt.
  • Dust fish lightly in rice flour first, then carefully lower the fish fillet into the hot 180°C oil and fry till very crisp approximately 2 mins. You may need to turn fish over midway through the cooking for even colouring.
  • Serve immediately along with a generous amount of yoghurt tartare and your favouritepickle

Dish is available online and in selected restaurants featured in the book for $75 RRP.

The limited print run means each edition is numbered, with all proceeds to go directly to the Starlight Children's Foundation.

There are an even smaller number of books autographed by a collective of the chefs for $100 RRP.