Saturday, February 13, 2010

More Fish

This'll have to be brief as I am trying to sort out the map for MUCH FALL OF BLOOD my alternate-history fantasy set in a renaissance that never happened. While the geography of Valahia (Wallachia) and Transylvania is much the same a lot of town names have changed. I tried to use the correct ones for the time - and now I have to make sure all of them in the correct places on the map. There are some downsides to being as accurate as possible.
Anyway, I must give the Silver Trevally an emphatic thumbs up, just plain grilled so I can pick up and learn the flavours as much as possible. I read that the colour of the flesh and fattyness of it varies a lot - that's something people really need to bear in mind with fish. Unless a fish species has a very narrow diet their taste will be influenced by the local foods they eat, just as the bloke who had garlic for for dinner last night smells (and probably tastes - never tried and hope I never do) of garlic, and cultured prawns or salmon just don't have the flavour of the wild ones. So if you really, really want to get picky about your fish it matters what species it is and how it was caught, and where it is from. Whitemark pier Trevally are great eating with a very recognisable and distinct flavour, almost 'gamey' and sort hint of lemony-ness to the flesh, nicely textured, and succulent. It'd be a waste to smoke it or disguise it.
The other fish we ate tonight was a present, 'flake'. I'm sorry but it ranks with trawler caught hake - edible, reasonable texture and in no way unpleasant. But dull compared to Flathead or the trevally.


  1. I'm sure you know this as much as I do - but make sure you have your map on paper, not just electronically. For one thing, It's easier to ref while you're writing, of course. But it's also the ultimate back up :-)

    Enjoyed reading about your experiments with fish. Growing up in Omaha, one of the most visited places sold carp sandwiches. They had a big tank out back that they kept the carp in. They tasted, well, horrible as far as I was concerned. (Downstream from the World's Largest Stockyards and several processing plants - doesn't need much imagination). I think the 20 something crowd liked because in the late 50s - early 60s (when my much older brothers like to go there) at pitcher of beer was 10 cents. A pitcher was about a gallon, IIRC. :-)

    So, if any of you are ever in Omaha and somebody suggests J** T***'s Carp Sandwich - you have been warned :-)


  2. Well, on paper in a neat file that says 'MFOB maps and refs' on the outside is and isn't a good thing - you see when after moving continents from a mountain top to an island... you can't find said file... anyway, done.
    Carp sandwiches? Good grief. At the very mention Barbs would be at the fore, running as hard as she could, followed closely by me... running away. Yuck. Sorry for any carp fanciers out there, yuck. When we worked on second fish farm the boss bought a load of cheap carp - several tons of them - for the fish slaughterhouse on the farm. The guts pong. I'd need a lot of that 10cents a gallon beer to face that.

  3. Flake is shark. Yup, bland and boring.