August 28th, 2004

bloke genes

Bloke Cooking Smoked Cod

When I checked in the fridge this afternoon there was nothing in there to eat, and dinner time was approaching. I looked in the freezer, and buried in the ice under the frozen peas, beans, corn, and chips was a packet of 4 fillets of smoked cod. They were out of date - just - and I figured they'd been frozen, so they should be okay. So I dug them out, and from the 3rd Drawer I dug out the cook books. Okay, I thought. Smoked Cod is one of them Old Dishes. It's been around for a long while and I figured the oldest book would have something.

One of mum's school text books from 1949 did. "The Commonsense Cookery Book, Compiled by The Public School Cookery Teachers' Association Of New South Wales (Revised Edition.)"

In amongst the recipes are ads for Swift's Potted Meats (Delicious spreads for sandwiches!) and Aunt Mary's Baking Powder, and Aga Heat Storage Cookers (A magician in your kitchen! No dials to turn, no gas to light! Burns coke, FREE FROM RATIONING!)

I found the smoked fish recipe after the "2 CAN go into one, if it's an Agee Pyrex Casserole dish!" ad, in the section simply label "Fish." The ingredients list in the book is "1 fish, 1 gill milk." That was all. I decided to improvise a little using the book as a guide sort of thing.

I cut each fillet into 4 chunks, spread them around a frypan and covered them with water. The book said to add a few drops of vinegar, so I did. I made the fish holy by boiling the hell out of it for 30 minutes, then drained it off. After the ad for Foster Clarkes Custard Powder the book went on about baking the fish in an oven, but I thought that sounded a bit much so I bunged in some milk, deciding to use enough to cover the fish because I have no idea how much a gill is. Then I mixed up a white sauce with milk, corn flour salt and pepper and added that to the pan, and let it simmer for another 30 minutes.

I washed it down with a fine chilled beer. Australian, of course.The others weren't so couth and drank a white châteaux cardboarde with the meal.
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