I had a friend coming for dinner this evening, and I wanted to make something warming and hearty. I was wracking my brains as to what I could do, and then I remembered that I had two pieces of beautiful smoked haddock in the freezer that needed eating. I always have rice, I always have eggs and I ALWAYS have butter so the idea of kedgeree was born.
I had bought the haddock from the Fish Man who appears at our local farm shop – Calcott Hall farm if anyone would like to know - every so often, and then stuck them in the freezer and did what everyone usually does - forgot about them.
Not tonight. Tonight they were going to be the star of the show, and deservedly so. Smokey, but not overly so, pearlescent white – none of the bright yellow garishness here – and incredibly meaty. I picked up some eggs on the way home and then once home it was straight into the kitchen. It had been a bit of a journey to get to my house, as the traffic in London was horrendous, thanks to roadworks on the number 23 bus route, so by the time I got in I was ravenous. Cue a trip to the freezer to get the fish, which I then set to defrost in the microwave. I found a recipe on the internet here: http://www.scottishrecipes.co.uk/kedgeree.htm, and followed it almost to the letter. I said almost.
350g basmati rice
2 smoked haddocks (need to crumble it)
4 hard boiled eggs
1 teaspoon of curry paste
4 chopped shallots
750mls stock (I used a kosher chicken consommé mix)
Chop the shallots, and soften them in the butter. Stir in the curry paste and mix well.
Set the haddock to simmer in water until it flakes easily. Skin it, and check for bones, then flake. Set aside.
Add the rice to the pan, and coat with the buttery, spicy shallot mixture.
Add the stock, mix well, and leave to simmer for about 15 minutes.
(Now. I had used too much of the consommé powder, so when I checked it the stock thickened up and I panicked. I added a touch more water, stirred it well and then thought sod it, it’ll be like congee but it will taste awesome.)
When the rice is nearly done, add in the flaked smoked haddock, except for the bits you have both already eaten whilst flaking said fish. Cover the pot with a teatowel, then jam on the lid. It helps the rice to steam.
After another ten minutes on a low heat, take off the lid et voila! The rice should be cooked, the fish should be tender and there you have your Kedgeree. I served it with hardboiled eggs and we slumped on the sofa making om nom nom noises until it was gone.
My lovely friend has been sent home with a box full of leftovers for lunch. This has made her happy, which makes me happy.