Flippin’ eck Tucker, one of the shops on the High Street is selling seven corn-on-the -cob for a pound and that is a bloomin’ bargain. Of course, sweetcorn is delicious eaten just as it comes, boiled or barbecued and simply accompanied with a knob of slowly melting butter, however tonight we decided upon this smoked haddock chowder.
This was based on a recipe from a book called ‘Veg’ by the chirpy Gregg Wallace of MasterChef fame. It’s meant to serve four, but we comfortably polished it off between the two of us. It is also meant to use fresh undyed smoked haddock, but realistically this is Britain, so where are you going to find a fishmonger? Our fish was bright yellow and frozen.
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Skill level: Easy
- smoked haddock – 300g
- 2 sweetcorn cobs
- 2 potatoes
- 1 onion – finely chopped
- 1 celery stalk – finely chopped
- milk – 300ml/10 fl oz
- fish stock – 300ml/10 fl oz
- white wine – 100ml/3Â½ fl oz
- double cream – 100ml/3Â½ fl oz (optional)
- butter – 25g/10 oz
- bunch of parsley – finely chopped
- olive oil
- salt & pepper
If you are using frozen fish start by poaching it in the milk until cooked (about 10 minutes depending on the thickness of the fillets). Put aside to cool, remove the skin and break into chunks.
Meanwhile heat the oil and butter and add the onion and celery. Cook with the lid on for 5 minutes. Remove the kernels from the cob, dice the potato into Â¾-inch cubes, and add to the pan. Cook for a further 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
Pour in the stock and wine, bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add the fish and simmer for 3-5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Stir in the cream (if using) and season.
Serve in bowls with a sprinkling of chopped parsley.
Verdict: A good filling comfort food to be enjoyed when the days are getting shorter and there is an autumnal rustle in the air.
Drink: The recipe required a splash of white wine … so we were contractually obliged to finish off the bottle.
Entertainment: ‘The Bourne Identity’ on DVD. I’ve only ever seen Matt Damon in ‘Team America’ so have always had a slightly biased opinion of him. This turned out to be a great film which managed to avoid many of the standard Hollywood cliches, probably much helped by being set in Europe. Also it had the massive bonus of starring the lovely Franka Potente of ‘Run Lola Run’ fame. I liked the way that in order to disguise Franka, Matt cut her hair by clumsily hacking away at it with a pair of blunt scissors. In the next scene she had the most stylish bob this side of Mary Quant. The next two in the Bourne franchise were immediately added to the LoveFilm list.