When I walk to the kitchen, I try to think about the menu for tonight's dinner. Mrs. Martina surely will ask me about the menu for dinner tonight when I arrive there. Since they already ate so much during the banquet, I will not make too many dishes. If I make too many dishes, that would burden their digestive organs and may lead to some illness later.
I remember I told the cooks to keep the fish head from the fish tempura that made for banquet today. I want to make this fish head to something delicious although it's just leftovers. Should I make fish head soup like in the beach before? Or something different, but still using the leftover fish's head.
Ah, right, Gandolf and his father, Uncle Rudolf also coming for dinner tonight. Let's serve rice and promote this rice product in front of Earl Stamfort. Then make something that can go along between rice and leftover fish head. Suddenly a recipe crossing on my mind, it's a famous cuisine in South East Asia countries named fish head curry or locals call it Gulai Kepala ikan. It's an exotic dish with rich flavor and famous for the tourist.
When I arrived in the kitchen, the cooks seem less than usual and they currently take a break after such a busy time. Mrs. Martina comes and greets me after she saw me coming
"Young master Henry…is there anything I can help?"
"Ah, I just come to arrange the menu for dinner and also say my thanks for the cooks for their hard work during the banquet. But I see there're fewer cooks than before, are they taking a break?"
"Oh, they helping the cooks in soldier barrack to make food for soldier's portion"
I almost forget that after the banquet, the soldiers that also work hard to keep the security also had their own party in the soldier barrack.
"I see…well please continue my gratitude words for their hard work later. The banquet can't be successful without their hard work. So, guys, I say thank you for your hard work"
I said the last part for the cooks that still in the kitchen.
"We also glad we can make the banquet successful, young master!"
"It's been a pleasure to participate in such banquet arrangement, young master Henry"
"We really tired but we also pleased when the guest enjoy our cooking, young master"
After said some remarks about their feeling, the cooks are clapping their hands for the joy of successful banquet.
"What we should prepare for the dinner tonight, young master Henry?"
Mrs. Martina asks the important matter of my visit.
"Ah, since we already eat so much during the banquet, I only want to make fewer dishes for dinner. We still have unused fish head right? I will teach a new recipe using the leftover fish head. Please take note and prepare these following ingredients needed and the cooking methods"
I give the cooks a recipe for fish head curry according to the recipe that I remember. Some ingredients may be not available yet like coconut milk, but since it's just optional ingredient, it can be put aside. Maybe when I visit the beach again I will take an exploration along the coastal line to see if there're some coconut trees there. if there're some coconut trees maybe I can take some coconut fruit back to the castle and add more ingredients for the kitchen.
• 1 large fish head (approximately 800 gm.-1 kg). like Tuna/Emperor, or a couple of smaller ones
• 4 tbsp. cooking oil
• 1tsp. mustard seeds or rai
• 1 1/2 inch piece of ginger, finely grated or ground
• 2 stalks of curry leaves (about 20 individual leaves)
• 2 large onions (500 gm. approximately), peeled and chopped roughly
• 2-3 garlic cloves, chopped (optional)
• 1 tbsp. coarse, made mustard
• Salt to taste
• 1 tsp. turmeric
• 2 tsp. coriander powder
• 1/2-1 tsp. chili powder, adjust to taste
• 1-2 whole red chilies
• 2 large tomatoes, chopped into small pieces or use tinned/pureed tomatoes
• 1 tbsp. vinegar or lemon juice, adjust to taste
• 1 1/2 liter hot water
• 1 can (250 ml.) coconut milk (optional)
1. Chop onion, ginger, and garlic finely or process in an electric processor.
2. Heat oil in a wok or frying pan. Add mustard seeds.
3. When seeds splutter, add onions, ginger (and garlic if used) and curry leaves, fry until onions are browned.
4. Add turmeric, coriander powder, whole chilies, chili powder, coarse made-mustard, and salt. Mix and fry for 1 minute.
5. Add tomatoes and vinegar. Mix in and fry for a couple of minutes, until it looks shiny and oils separate.
6. Add water, bring to boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Add coconut milk here, if used.
7. Add the fish head, bring to boil and simmer gently, spooning the curry sauce over the head frequently. After 15 minutes, turn the fish head over gently, without breaking it.
8. Simmer for a further 15 minutes or so. The oil floats at the top of the gravy when it is ready.
9. Serve hot with Boiled Rice or Plain Pulao Rice.
After giving the recipe, I excuse myself from the kitchen and leave to take a bath. Before leaving I add some instruction to prepare another dish that they already learn for dinner as well like wakame salad and birds nest soup. I also want to cook the lobster I bring from the beach, but I will cook them personally since the amount of lobster is limited and no time for experimenting yet. Later when I can secure supply line from the beach to castle maybe I can teach the cooks here about lobster dishes.
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