…And He’ll Eat For Like A Whole Weekend

So the epic fish saga continued; I originally intended to grind up the rest and make fish ball soup, because it’s still dead cold out and a tangy, spicy soup seemed like a good plan. Also, it would have afforded me the opportunity to write “fish balls” numerous times in the post. But as is so often the case, I changed my mind come prep time, after a pretty painless sojourn to the store for the first wave of stocking up the week’s vittles. Actually, it was the second wave, since I went to the butcher’s yesterday. And so you’re just going to have to suffer through a post in which I only mention fish balls about a third as many times as I would have if I had actually made fish balls.

The remaining varieties included pollock, cod, and turbot, and since we had turbot the other night I put that back in the fridge and cut the other two into regular-ish squares, then dredged them in seasoned flour. We had just enough oil to get about 3/4 inch deep in our smallest pan- I forgot to buy more- but the pieces were small enough that with one flip they’d cook just fine. The lack of oil did pose a problem for the tartar sauce I wanted, since I normally like to make mayonnaise with a neutral oil. But I used olive oil, with dribbles of both sesame and truffle, plus a little mustard, garlic scape pesto, yuzu juice, and a little liquid from a jar of cornichons, then folded in some minced cornichons. We had just run out of capers this morning as I used them up on a bagel with cream cheese and homemade fennely-spicy gravlax. It was worth it.

I used the mandoline to bang out some Japanese yam fries, and baked them with generous olive oil- shaking frequently- until they were nice and brown. Before dark, I ventured out into the frigid twilight and grabbed numbly at a variety of greens in the garden- kale, chard, mustard, and collards. They got a spin in the processor with garlic and just enough oil to make a thick pesto. I gave all the fish pieces another dredge in the flour mixture and fried them in batches until all were brown and beautiful. And that was dinnner; it’s funny- after all that, in the picture they do kind of look a little like fish balls. Milo invented mixing green mash and tartar sauce together to make an even better sauce for yam and fish alike.

7 comments to …And He’ll Eat For Like A Whole Weekend

  • The Spiteful Chef

    And now you stole my fries idea. Except it’s yams, and, surprise surprise, Japanese ;) I hate emoticons. Time to kick my own ass.

    That green mash is beautiful. And my captcha was Fahirel, which I’m pretty sure would be my name if I were an Elf like Liv Tyler.

  • Brittany

    Your child’s brilliant food creations never cease to amaze…

    I wish I’d eaten at your house today. Even if I would have froze my balls off.

  • Jen of A2eatwrite

    How long are you keeping your garden going – do you have a hoophouse? I know you mentioned the artichokes.

    We still have greens in the market – I guess the frost hasn’t eaten everything yet.

  • Maris

    Japanese yam fries is such an awesome idea! I love anything in the sweet potato family (though I do now that they are different!)

  • Heather

    I’ve had a hanker for some good fish and chips lately. I’ve only used kotubuki in nabe. Those Dioscorea are all good fried, though.

    We haven’t had frost yet – yay, global warming! My chard, kale and collards are the only things still kickin’ though. Thanksgiving gratin?

  • peter

    Kristie: I knew the second I typed the capital J that you’d have something to say about it.

    My wife used to work Liv Tyler out back in NYC. I offered to do it, but was denied.

    Brittany: Your FISH balls, you mean.

    Jen: I’ve got hoops over five beds right now. Last winter I kept 4 beds going in some kind of style into the spring.

    Maris: Welcome. Yep, these were nutty and delicious. I was intending sweet potato, but we had these.

    Blanche: Those three are indestructable. We’ve also got beets, radishes, leeks, celery root, pan di zucchero, and a bunch of salady things going too.

  • glamah16

    Love this plate of food. Makes fried food fun and interesting.

Yours Truly



I'm a painter who happens to also spend a lot of time growing, making, and writing about food. I'm particularly interested in the intersection of frugal peasant cooking techniques and haute improvisation. And I have a really great personality.

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