HESTON BLUMENTHAL'S NEW SERIES ON CLASSIC BRITISH COOKING BEGINS ON CHANNEL 4 10 DECEMBER 2013 @ 9.00PM.
Britain is home to some of the most iconic dishes in the world, from fish and chips, pies and steamed puddings, to roast beef and Yorkshires.
Each week in the three part series, Heston takes one British dish, and reveals the secret history behind its evolution, in order to find inspiration for an incredible culinary salute to it.
First off, fish and chips. Heston reveals the incredible stories and discovers the origins of this brilliant British food before serving up a magical fish and chip supper to the people who make them possible - fishermen and chippie workers.
First stop: Victorian Britain. Heston travels on the Bluebell Railway to discover the crucial role the new railway network played in the evolution of the fish and chip shop. Determined to capture the very essence of the chippie, Heston attempts to blend an entire chippie menu, batter the results and create the chip shop experience in just one bite. It's a delicious success and becomes the first element in his fish and chip supper.
The chippie rose to prominence during the reign of Queen Victoria, so it would only be right to look to one of her favourite fish suppers for inspiration. So, in the second chapter, Heston tries out baked cod's head and ribbon potatoes. It's an unusual looking dish, but goes down well with 21st century diners. Taking his cue from the fish's eye, Heston creates a realistic-looking monster eyeball made with cod's cheek and tongue.
For his main course, Heston takes inspiration from another British tradition; fish Friday, which he discovers was enforced by the Church to encourage piety in the people. Henry VIII, however, loved his meat, so on days when meat was banned his chefs would disguise fish as meat, with dishes such as mock mutton cutlet. Inspired by the playfulness of Tudor chefs, Heston decides to make a delicious fake fish skin made with truffle, madeira gel and sea urchin, sitting on a fillet of turbot. Covered in his own signature batter it looks like a classic piece of fried fish, but brings an extraordinary taste to every bite. When Heston turns his attention to the chips, he creates the perfect accompaniment to his own ground-breaking triple cooked chips, with a chippie-inspired soggy chip dip, a match made in chip heaven.
With the main course sorted, Heston turns his attention to that classic chippie accompaniment - mushy peas. Inspired by meeting a mushy pea expert in Great Yarmouth, Heston decides to create a pea ice-cream. Delivered from an Mr Whippy machine, Heston serves it up alongside chocolate chips with popping candy, and rosehip and raspberry puree ketchup.
With his fish and chip-inspired menu now complete, Heston needs to find a fitting location in which to serve it. He travels to Brixham in Devon, a frontline fishing port during the war years. Heston learns that hundreds of the nation's fishermen lost their lives during WW2. Inspired by the story of the wartime sacrifice of fishermen from ports like Brixham, Heston decides to hold his finale there.
But his trip to Brixham has also inspired Heston to create one final dish. Heston creates a final mind-blowing nod to his memories of seaside holidays with an edible rock pool. Heston creates a life-like XXX mussel, complete with edible shell and a lobster-flavoured star fish, surrounded with other rock pool favourites, from edible sea sponges, to drinkable rock pool water.
Heston finally unleashes his fish and chip inspired finale to a cheering crowd. Guests file on-board 'HMS Chippy' to enjoy a culinary fish and chip experience like no other. From eating a giant eyeball from a monster fish, giant chips, to edible rock pools and mushy pea ice-cream to gourmet fish and triple cooked chips, a trip to the local chippie will never be the same again.