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Art & Soul: Quarantine Comfort Food With A Fish And Chips Pop-Up At Zingerman's Cornman Farms

Marta Perez Photography

The chef and owner of Zingerman's Cornman Farms grew up in England and started his cooking career at age 13.  A few weeks ago, he began offering a Wednesday-only, pop-up fish and chips dinner at the farm that sells out quickly.

WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with Kieron Hales about his journey and what he calls "the perfect British comfort food."

Kieron Hales
Credit Marta Perez Photography
Cornman Farms chef/owner Kieron Hales

Kieron Hales started his chef career at 13 years old with an apprenticeship and has worked in 27 different countries honing his cooking craft.  He says he is passionate about cooking because it brought joy to people and says his way to make people happy is to cook them food.

Every Wednesday through the month of August, Cornman Farms is offering a pop-up fish and chips dinner which Hales calls "the perfect British comfort food."  Ordering takes place starting on Thursday and can be done through this link and sells out quickly.  

The farm’s British chef and owner, Kieron Hales, felt the need to do something to bring a little bit of joy to his quarantining community.  Each meal comes with 12 ounces of golden, battered cod fish with a hefty serving of thick, salty chips (a.k.a. french fries) and an array of traditional sauces and condiments, including curry sauce, tartar sauce, malt vinegar, ketchup, and a lemon wedge.

“A lot of chefs have tried to ‘elevate’ fish and chips in the past.  That’s not what we’re doing here -- they are best when you simply follow tradition,” says Hales.  “It should be a greasy delight, served on a disposable plate with a fiddly wooden fork and enjoyed in a parked car with the windows down.” 

Credit Marta Perez Photography
Zingerman's Cornman Farms Farmhouse

And that’s exactly what Hales plans for his customers.  While the farm cannot host guests for a proper sit-down meal yet, it is allowing them to park on property, roll down the windows, and stare off at the rolling fields while digging into their food.  Alternatively, guests can head to one of the many beautiful metroparks nearby, such as Mill Creek Park and Hudson Mills Metropark.


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— Lisa Barry is the host of All Things Considered on WEMU. You can contact Lisa at 734.487.3363, on Twitter @LisaWEMU, or email her at lbarryma@emich.edu

Lisa Barry was a reporter, and host of All Things Considered on 89.1 WEMU.
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