Smoked fish kedgeree

smoked fish kedgeree © dan and tuesday

smoked fish kedgeree © dan and tuesday

Kedgeree is the best thing for breakfast or brunch on a lazy weekend. It doesn’t take long to make and the mixed flavours of the smoked fish and spices are absolutely divine. Dan used kipper when he made it for Chris and Lilly. I used smoked mackerel when Monette was visiting last weekend.

Rica asked me on facebook what kedgeree was. Clinton replied that it is “tinapa wth cream mixed with lugaw =)” Tinapa is a smoked milkfish or bangus; lugaw is a type of congee. Since I don’t put cream on my kedgeree and it doesn’t look like lugaw to me, I looked it up and found out that this is a variety of kedgeree. I also read that kedgeree is a popular breakfast dish during the Victorian time. More on kedgeree here.

This recipe serves 4.

You need

  • 4 boiled free-range eggs, quartered lengthwise
  • cooked boiled rice* (2 cups uncooked)
  • 500g smoked fish (mackerel, kipper, haddock, tinapa), flaked
  • 8 cardamom pods
  • 2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 25g butter
  • 1 small onion
  • salt and pepper
  • chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • lemon or lime wedges (we prefer lime)

Tools

  • mortar and pestle
  • frying pan

What to do:

  1. Crush fennel seed and cardamom pods using mortar and pestle. Remove the cardamom husks, leaving the seeds.
  2. Melt butter in frying pan then fry onion and all the spices in medium heat for about 5 mins.
  3. Stir the fish and rice. Make sure that the rice is covered in turmeric so it will have a yellowish colour.
  4. Add the eggs and parsley, stirring gently so as not to destroy the eggs.
  5. Serve with lime or lemon wedge.

* I cheated here as we used a rice cooker. I got my rice cooker on my birthday from a group of Pinoys living in the UK who probably cannot believe that I do not own one. I used 2 cups of rice for this recipe, about 250g. More picture of making the kedgeree from the slideshow below or from my flickr account here.

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more about “smoked fish kedgeree“, posted with vodpod

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Smoked trout on pappardelle pasta

Smoked trout in parpadelle

Smoked trout in pappardelle pasta

This recipe comes from Gordon Ramsay’s Fast Food book. I wouldn’t describe it as “fast”, but probably because I was making it for the first time and it takes me a while to make something fiddly like a sauce. Next time will be quicker. I tried getting into the Ramsay style of cooking, but I had nobody to shout and swear at, so I don’t think it worked. Cooked this for guests, and it went down very well. They could tell by the mess in the kitchen (Tuesy: yes, he messed up my kitchen!) that I’d made an effort.

You need:

  • 6 medium vine plum tomatoes
  • 85g of sun-dried tomatoes in oil (about 15 pcs)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 banana shallots (or 4 regular ones), roughly choppped
  • 175ml olive oil
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 500g fresh pappardelle (or you can use tagliatelle)
  • 600g skinless smoked trout fillets, flaked into large chunks
  • grated parmesan
  • salt and pepper
chopped banana shallots

chopped banana shallots

What to do:

  1. Skin tomatoes – this is easy Tuesday did this for the roasted tomato soup recipe. Chop the tomatoes in half and take out the seeds. I found it a bit tricky to squeeze out the seeds, so I left a lot of them in there. Don’t tell Tuesy. I don’t think anyone noticed.

    skinning vine-riped tomatoes

    skinning vine-riped tomatoes

  2. Put the tomatoes, garlic, shallots, olive oil, and lemon juice in a food processor until you have a smooth sauce. Season to your taste.

    ingredients on food processor

    ingredients on food processor

  3. Pour the sauce into a pan and warm on a medium heat. Be careful not to boil it too quickly.
  4. Cook the pasta until al dente then toss with the tomato sauce and flaked trout (don’t flake that trout too much – it looks and tastes great with big chunks of fish in it. Serve with parmesan. Lots of parmesan. And probably some fresh black pepper.

Thai red fish curry

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This is one of my favourite dishes to make, and it’s really easy, especially if you get a good Red curry paste. Marks and Spencer’s is a tasty one, but I’m sure you’ll find your preference. Prepare yourself with the following ingredients:

  • 4 fish fillets, about 600g in all: This recipe was originally given to me with chicken, but Tuesy doesn’t eat animals with legs, so I tried it with fish and it seems much better. I use haddock, but you can vary it however you like. Meaty white fish works best, though.
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 3 tbsp Thai red curry paste
  • 400 ml can coconut milk
  • 300 ml vegetable stock. You can also use fish stock as long as it’s not too … you know … fishy.
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 200 g pack mixed baby corn and mangetout
  • 2 tbsp coriander
  • If you want to spice up the curry a bit (or a lot), just thinly slice some fresh green chillies (you won’t need more than one medium-sized chilli for this much curry) and add it to the stir fry.

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What to do:

  1. Cut the fish fillets into chunks. Big cubes of around 2cm is good. Heat the oil in a wok or a large saute pan. Throw in the red curry paste and cook it, stirring all the time, for about 2 minutes.
  2. Add that fish and then stir-fry it in the paste on a medium-high heat until it’s browned all over.
  3. Add the coconut milk, stock, lime juice and baby corn. Bring to the boil, then add the mangetout. Reduce the heat and simmer for 4-5 minutes until the fish is properly cooked. Don’t overdo the cooking – I like to keep those vegetables good and crunchy.
  4. Sprinkle the chopped coriander (the fresher the better) over the top of the curry and serve it with steamed rice. Believe it or not, that’s all there is to it.

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Smoked fish pie

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This is an easy one, and pies look quite impressive, especially if you pretend you made your own puff pastry. Quick! Grab yourself the following ingredients:

450g smoked haddock fillet, skinned
200ml carton creme fraiche
15g plain flour
20g flat-leafed parsley, chopped
salt and pepper
375g pack ready-rolled puff pastry

  1. Preheat a large shallow baking tray in the oven set at 230C (210C fan oven). Try and pull out any stray bones from your haddock. Got them all out? Nothing spoils a fish pie like the fear of deadly little bones lurking inside it. When your fish has been cleared of these nasty little spears, cut it into little chunks.
  2. Save one teaspoon of creme fraiche for later, and put the rest into a bowl with the fish, flour and parsley. Mix it all together and season with salt and black pepper. Lots of black pepper works well for me.
  3. Now you’ll need a second baking tray. Roll out the pastry onto it, and brush the edges with water to moisten it. It’s like licking your envelope ready to seal it shut. But please don’t lick the pastry, especially not if any of your dinner guests are watched. Dollop the fish into the pastry and spread it over one half of the sheet. Leave a border along those wet edges. Fold the pastry to seal your fishy envelope, pressing the edges together. If you’re feeling fancy, you can crimp the edges. I’m just happy if I can get the pie to stay shut.
  4. Mix that last bit of creme fraiche with a little water and brush it over te top of the pie to glaze it, then slash the pastry with some diagonal lines, Freddy Kreuger-style, so that the steam doesn’t get trapped and explosive during cooking.
  5. I often have trouble getting the pie to bake evenly – the base sometimes burns before the top of the pastry has cooked enough to rise. The trick is to put your second baking tray, the one with the pie on it, on top of the hot one in the oven, and cook it for about half an hour (you’ll know when it’s sufficiently golden brown).

I promise you will want to eat all the pies if they’re as good as this one. You can use different fish if you prefer – the effect will be much the same, and you can serve it with your own choice of steamed or roasted vegetables, or have it with a salad. Better still might be to scoff it out of a paper bag while sitting on a cold, wet, windy sea-front, but that’s just me.

Salmon Fish-Cakes

Last weekend’s cheer-up-Tuesy charm offensive delivered its grand finale on Sunday evening. Stop me if I sound too boastful, but I was very happy with how this turned out – for an amateur cook, it’s always exciting when a recipe really works, and there are few cooks more amateur than me…

Prepare your fish-cake mixture 2-3 hours before you plan to cook them (they take a little under half an hour to bake). To make enough fish-cakes for four people you will need:
900g maris piper potatoes
900f salmon fillets
Juice of 1 lemon
4tbsp mayonnaise
pinch of cayenne pepper
large pinch of chilli powder (more if you like spiciness)
2 tbsp of chopped herbs (I used flat flat-leaf parsley, but tarragon or basil will work just as well
2 tbsp chilli oil.
Peel the potatoes, chop them into quarters and boil them. Once boiled to softness, drain away the water, and return to heat for a couple of minutes to dry them out. Then mash ’em. With a masher.
While the spuds are boiling, put your salmon and half the lemon juice into a pan with a pint of cold water. Bring it just to the boil and leave to stand in the water for a few minutes. It’ll cook just enough in the remaining heat. Then drain the salmon, peel off the skin and flake it. It’s good not to mash it up too much – the fish-cakes are delicious if you can still feel the “meatiness” of the fish (you don’t want them to be too smooth).

Mix the salmon with the mashed potatoes and add the spices and herbs, the lemon juice and the mayonnaise. Mix well and season with salt and pepper.
Now make your fish-cakes on a non-stick baking tray. I lined my tray with non-stick baking paper, which worked a treat. If you’re good with your hands, you can pat the mixture into eight thick cakes (maybe 2cm deep). If you have a large round biscuit/cookie cutter, you can use that to get them into a nice shape. I used a non-stick heart-shaped fried egg shaper, meaning that my cakes looked like this:
Not too shabby. Put your tray of fish-cakes in the fridge for a couple of hours. This will firm them up ready to be baked. Once they’re ready, drizzle the chilli oil on top and bake at 200 degrees centigrade or until they go brown and a bit crispy on the outside. I served these with mangetout and baby corn and a little rocket. You can serve them with whatever you like. Nobody’s checking.

Spiced Tuna Steak


This weekend, since Tuesy needed cheering up I thought I’d be extra-organised and prepare a couple of seafood dishes. Since she doesn’t eat meat but will happily indulge in piscicide, tuna is an excellent middle ground between veggie and carnivore. I’ll save the other recipe, which I think was even better, for another day. I need to pace myself…

Get yourself some big, thick tuna steaks. As much as you can eat/afford. You’re going to marinade them. To make the marinade, mix the following:
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp grated fresh root ginger. You might want a bit more if you’re a ginger fan.
1 peeled, crushed garlic clove
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp chilli powder. Again, if you like at spicy, double this. It’s quite safe.
Salt and pepper as desired.

Mix this lot up, and smear it all over your tuna steaks, which you’ve already patted dry with kitchen roll, right? Leave this to marinate for a couple of hours.
(A quick aside. I’m listening to the US Open tennis semi-final. Andy Murray might be about to beat Nadal. Please, please, please…)
OK, here’s the master-stroke. You’re going to make some raita. This is easy, and it’s delicious. You need about 150g greek yoghurt (standard-sized tub), which you mix with some chopped mint and about 50g of chopped cucumber. Chop it fine. Mix this up and it will be a great taste to dollop on your spicy tuna and offset its kick.

Grab your favourite frying pan or griddle. Heat a little oil. Heat it a lot. Cook the tuna steaks for a couple of minutes and then turn and cook for a little more. I like mine scorched on the outside and still pink in the middle. Tuesy likes hers well done. The choice is yours, but the marinade will blacken it a little if you fry it for a long time. That’s still delicious, though.
Serve your tuna with the raita and a green salad. I made it this time with boiled potatoes and broccoli because we were really hungry, but the salad really prioritises the fleshy goodness of your steak. If you cooked it, bask in the appreciation. If it was served to you, feel lucky.
(Murray might be throwing the match away in the time it took me to write this. Dammit. But there’s still a chance…)