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January 29, 2017 / hbrowne4

A nice kettle of fish

For Geralyn

“What are you doing?” Amanda asked

“I’m making chowder” I replied

“Chowder? What’s that when its at home?”

“It’s a kind of fish stew. Some people put Mussels and various sorts of other fish in it but I like to only use smoked white fish, you know, Cod, Coley or Mackerel” as I spoke I continued to finely chop a medium onion.

“Jeez” she snivelled “that’s a strong onion and she wiped her eyes and sneezed “how come you’re not crying your eyes out?”

“If you spend enough time peeling and cooking onions you’ll never suffer the tears again” I said, going on to chop three cloves of garlic.

“Isn’t that a lot of garlic?” She asked “Well garlic is one of those things” I replied ” You either like it or you don’t, I rather fancy it myself. It’s a matter of your perspective, I find”

“But don’t you stink of it for days afterwards”

“Not if you eat some fresh parsley, that negates the garlic smell” as I spoke I started to fry the onions and garlic in a little olive oil. Whilst they were cooking I peeled a couple of medium potatoes and cut them into half inch cubes. Turning to the onions I found them perfectly cooked and not browned

“It’s important not to brown the onions because this is a white stew and browned onions would spoil it” I pontificated. I then tipped the potato cubes into the pot on top of the onions and added a glass of dry white wine and just enough vegetable stock to barely cover them and put them back on their heat to simmer.

“They’ll take about fifteen minutes to cook” I said I’ll check them in ten minutes”. And I turned to the piece of smoked cod which was waiting for preparation

“This is real smoked cod” I said “you’ll notice it’s a pale creamy colour, not that nasty yellow colour you get in the supermarket. This was smoked in the smokehouse in Howth, it’s the real deal”

Cutting the fish into bite sized chunks and checking the potatoes which were just on the point of being perfectly cooked I tipped the cod pieces into the stew and continued cooking for another five minutes.

“Smell that” I said “Isn’t it just the bees knees. Now I just add a can of drained sweet corn, a half pint of cream and some white pepper and let it all boil for another five minutes, sprinkle it with fresh chopped parsley and you’ve got a meal that’s fit for a King”

“How about a few hands of Poker after dinner, I’ve got some poker chips so we needn’t use real money?”


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