Thursday, 16 February 2012

Frugal fish supper for two

Ready in: Around 30 minutes
Multi-tasking level: Medium
A whole rainbow trout
This will work with other fish- check the fresh fish counter for stuff that’s reduced to clear. As long as the eyes aren’t cloudy, it’ll taste great.
1 Onion

3 handfuls of any raw veg
Search Reduced To Clear section for nice things
1.39 per kilo- probably using about 40p worth here
Not the boil in the bag stuff, that stuff is weird and expensive.
1 lemon

1 inch fresh ginger

Splash of Mirin
Mirin is sweet rice wine vinegar. It tastes like pudding wine, and you put it in things to make them delicious.
Splash of Soy sauce
Get a big bottle of it in a Chinese supermarket. Cheaper and better quality than buying it in western supermarkets in tiny little bottles.
                                 Or about £2.00 each[1]
·       Small saucepan with lid for rice
·       Large pan with steamer (bamboo steamers are less than a fiver at Chinese supermarkets and can cook anything to perfection)
·       Chopping board and knife
1.       Rice
a.        Measure: Put some rice in the saucepan. Remember that it will expand to double its size, so work out how much you and your gal are likely to eat.
b.       Wash: Put cold water in the rice pan and swirl it around with your hand until the water turns cloudy. Block the rice with your hand and drain the water out. Repeat these steps until your water turns clear- about 5-7 times.[2]
c.        Water: Place your finger so the tip just touches the rice. Fill the pan with water until it reaches the first joint on this finger. That’s the right amount of water.
d.       Flavour: Cut up some slices of lemon and put them on the rice/water, along with some slices of peeled ginger if you’re feeling fancy.
e.       Cook: Put on full heat until it boils. Don’t take the lid off, at all. Turn right down to the lowest heat for 10 minutes or until all the water is absorbed. Start the fish prep now. After ten minutes, take off the heat WITHOUT TAKING THE LID OFF and leave it to steam itself off the bottom of the pan until you’re ready to eat.
2.       Veg and fish
a.        Put boiling water in the pan and put it on the hob with the steamer on top to get previous smells off it.
b.       Prep the fish: Don’t be a pussy about this. Take the fish out of the packet.
                                                                                                  i.       It will be slimy, and you want all that slime off. Run it under cold water and scrape it lightly with your knife and the slime will come right off
                                                                                                ii.       Open up the fish and look inside. Get rid of any red stuff, especially near the base of the tail- run over it with your knife under a tap.
                                                                                              iii.       Cut the head/tail off if it won’t fit in the steamer whole. Also possibly the fins if they freak you out.
                                                                                              iv.       Cut slits in the flesh on each side to make the fish cook better. Shove finely chopped garlic and ginger in them, and put slices of lemon inside the fish.
c.        Put things in the steamer
                                                                                                  i.       Make little plates of tinfoil about two inches smaller than the bamboo steamer and put them in both
                                                                                                ii.       Put your veg in the bottom one, and your lovely prepped fish in the top. Add whatever’s left of the lemon, ginger and garlic to the veg tray, with a splash of soy sauce.
d.       Cook: Ten minutes and your fish will be done. Check it with a fork- it should be flakey. The veg will also be fine. Your kitchen will smell delicious.
3.       Plate up
a.        Finally open up the rice- it will smell great but might need a little more liquid. Put in a splash of mirin and mix it in with chopping movements.
b.       Get the sides of the fish off the spine with a spatula. Watch out for bones.

[1] If this sounds like a lot, think how much you’d pay for this in a restaurant
[2] This is washing the starch out of the rice. The starch is what makes the rice taste mushy and slimy at the end. Your rice is going to be excellent.

1 comment:

  1. At last, inspiration to actually use the bamboo steamer that lurks, unloved,in the larder...