"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Operation Monkfish

The Chap's favourite meal is basically Monkfish Anything. He loves it.

Whenever we're in a fish market we always marvel that the most hideous fish in the sea is among the most delicious. Whenever we're in a restaurant, he orders it. And sometimes I do also.

A very special memory is watching the catch being unloaded at Mallaig, a fishing village in Scotland not terribly far from my ancestral villages. They pluck the ugly creature out of the cold waters of the North Sea, fling them onto ice, crate them up and send them away to be enjoyed by monkfish fanciers like us.

We acquired a vast amount of fresh monkfish from a Concord fishmonger. And today was the appointed day for my first ever attempt at cooking monkfish. I got a couple of recipes from Jo at Amuse Bouche. I didn't follow the recipe exactly, being unable to do so, I always make my own adjustments, but overall I was fairly faithful.

Here's the fish--mostly tail.

It has a creepy skin covering that must be got rid of.

Chopped cherry tomatoes.

Crisping the pork.

Braising the tomatoes, pork, garlic.

Orzo pasta.

While the pasta water boils, I pan sear the monkfish.

The seared fish goes into the braise and cooks while the pasta is cooking and it all finished up exactly at the same time. Last step was throwing in shredded fresh basil.


Looks like the recipe photo. Tasted so awesome I'm beyond words. The Chap is happy. I'm happy. The red and green colours were perfect for the Christmas season.

Tomorrow: traditional turkey. (Not roasted by us.)

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