About Me
I'm a Melbourne boy, hailing from St Kilda with one ex, one current wife and four kids. Love the outdoors and making new discoveries. I cook a lot at home (cheers from wife) and do some preserving, mostly jams, pickles and fruit liqueurs. This is the diary of a cooking journey.

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Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Sweet & Sour
Maybe, just maybe, one shouldn't keep similar containers, with similar but different contents, side by side in the fridge.

After my recent fishing trip, we had a beautiful King George whiting of almost a kilo, plus a couple of flatheads. King George whiting is one of the premier table fish from the waters of southern Australia. Flatheads are a fish that no one has any trouble catching, they have saved many a fishing trip, and the beauty of them is, despite their ugly appearance, they are also a fine table fish.

My wife D prefers me to cook fish, as she doesn't feel confident enough. I usually just season the fish, no flour, melt some butter over high heat and as it's turning nut brown, place in the fish presentation side down and adjust the heat to stay at a brisk fry. A lot of people say to add oil to help stop the butter burning, but I never do. What burns in the butter are milk solids, adding oil doesn't prevent them from burning, it only dilutes the milk solids, meaning there is less to burn. Heat control is the most important thing. Of course you could fry in oil, but the combination of fish and butter always works a treat.

I had taken fillets from the whiting, but as the flathead were small, left them whole. It's a bit easier to retrieve the fine bones from a flathead after it's cooked, than taking fillets and trying to locate the bones. Also, generally fish cooked on the bone is more succulent.

After the fish were cooked we sat down, D had made a salad, but before I took some she offered to make something else. It turns out that D wanted a yoghurt dressing for the salad and reached in to the fridge for the tub, scooped out some yoghurt, made the dressing and poured it on the salad, then tasted it. What she tasted was sweet with a vanilla aftertaste. D had accidently grabbed the wrong yoghurt tub.

In an effort to salvage the salad, she adjusted with lemon juice. How much would you use? Quite a lot really. We now had a sweet and sour, vanilla flavoured salad. How bad could that be? With the fish on the table, I offered to eat the salad anyway. That offer only lasted until the first mouthful.

Sometimes it's better to throw out and start again.

  posted at 9:32 am

At 12:28 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Similar story: Schweppes recently released a lemon-flavoured tonic with a near-identical label to the normal stuff. It tasted disgusting with gin. I thought there was something wrong with the Gordon's. Or me. I finished nearly the whole bottle before I twigged. (The whole bottle of tonic, not the Gordon's.)

At 10:45 am, Blogger Ange said...

Very funny, I feel for your D!

At 2:36 pm, Blogger neil said...

Hi Kitchen hand, when I was younger, I used to drink my mum's tonic water much to her chagrin, also pinched the dark cooking chocolate. Loved that bitter edge. Yeah, lemon flavoured tonic water with gin doesn't sound to good.

Hi Ange, yes I felt for her too. Imagine knowing your partner blogs about food. I'm all ready in trouble for posting one of her recipes.


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