Saltfish & ackee, fried plantains, callaloo with okra, basmati rice, and American-style meatloaf equals amazing feast for my friend’s birthday. I spent the entire day cooking in my kitchen listening to BBC In Our Time podcasts and drinking unlimited cups of tea. Oh it’s such a perfect day... And that is the diary entry over and done with. I first tried saltfish and ackee on a whim after seeing the plastic trays of saltfish in the world foods section of Altrincham Tesco a couple of years ago. I bought it out of curiosity with no idea what to do with it.
Tins of ackee don’t come cheap, but the saltfish can be kept for ages, it just needs putting in water to soak the night before you need it. Onions, pepper, chilli and garlic, stir fried with flaked saltfish and chopped tomato, then just as you are about to serve whack in the ackee and stir gently. Ackee is a Jamaican fruit. It’s savoury and has a very buttery taste. It looks a bit like scrambled egg. Meatloaf was a new experiment for me, and I’m somewhat undecided as to the results. It’s a tad under seasoned, and the dish was full of watery juices which needed draining off at the end of cooking. I don’t think it should be like that. Plus I forgot to put the Worchester sauce in; curses. Two out of three ain’t bad...
And as the Arab world protests for or against ideas and things I don’t understand, I force meat and rice down my throat and lie in an overfed stupor on the sofa like a foie gras goose. If I continue in this manner my liver will surely lodge a formal protest and I shall have to take the cure; “tool down the hill to the Royal Pump Room every morning at eight-thirty and imbibe twelve ounces of warm crescent saline and magnesia”. And not even my intestinal bacteria will pity me.
I started writing this yesterday and forgot to post it, and seem to be a day behind meaning I need to write another one today just to catch up with where I should have been two days ago had I not spent the whole day in the kitchen forgoing my blog responsibilities. I am getting a lazy attitude towards the blog which needs to be quelled (or quashed) before the whole project collapses, and what a shame that would be after so much exerted (or excreted) effort. A nice plate of food is no excuse, but it is a consolation.