Sunday, November 4, 2007

Flying Fish

Some of you may recognize from the flag that I was born in the Caribbean - Barbados. While Barbados has MUCH to offer, what I miss most - besides family - is the food.
(umm.. and the sand that feels like you're walking on icing sugar, beautiful water/scenery/laid back lifestyle.... let me think about this!)

Bajan food is a mixture of African and English, with the local ingredients the star attractions.
One of the best cooks I know is a wonderful lady by the name of Eileen Cummins. We call her by her surname (maybe this is not good in today world, but that is how its done there). Cummins has been with my grandparents since before I was born, and to this day, nobody cooks quite as sweet as she does... though my mum is a very close second!
Anyway, one of my favorite dishes is fried Flying fish. When paired with Coo-coo(a cornmeal mush - like polenta, but better), its the National Dish. The image below is of a Flying fish, so named because they 'fly' through the air to escape predators.

Not many other islands use FF for eating (too many bones); they use it mainly for bait...BIG mistake! Bajan's know that "da tougher the shell da sweeter da meat" .. and that is certainly true for FF as deboning is a nightmare.. heck, I wouldn't even try. Thankfully there are people skilled in the task, and I have never gotten a bone yet.

Here's my version, substituting the Flying Fish with Tilapia.

First, the seasoning.. a mixture of shallots, black pepper, white pepper, green onions, thyme, sweet marjoram (sometimes), garlic, hot pepper, clove, vinegar and salt.

OR, as in my case, store bought with a little added habanero.. I like things spicy!

The fish subsitute.... its okay.

Always clean your fish with a little lime juice.. not too long now.

Slice in some slits and stuff with seasoning..

Egg bath: Add a little touch of baking powder (no, I don't know why, but whatever Cummins does, I follow..

Now for the breadcrumbs. I seasoned these with Parmesan cheese, salt/pepper and parsley...

Fry up... (until done)...

Serve with red beans & rice.. while not traditional, is very good with this spicy fish. A nice cooling avocado & cucumber salad would be a good addition also....

(The rice and beans are courtesy of Zatarain's.. they're excellent- especially with the addition of a lot little sour cream).

Bon appetit!


electro-kevin said...

You got me hungry now. I don't even like fish.

Lady Jane said...

Most people that don't like fish like Bajan style fish, dunno why. Nah...

We cook da BEST food is why!

Lady Jane said...

Daisy LOVED this. I am feeding her good so she doesn't leave!

johny thomas said...

Keep it up!! You have done the nice job having provided the latest information.