Perhaps I am the real fake in all of this. My brain was not in gear while I was buying the fish at the weekend. There is nothing unusual in this as I tend to buy the fish early on a Saturday morning. The ‘end of week’ bottle of wine tends to be still influencing me by the time I get to talk to Han in George’s Fish Shop. In response to my “What’s fresh?”, he put on a wry smile and refused to rises to the bait. Instead, he reminded me that everything is fresh except the frozen stuff. Then he recommended the Haddock.
When I started to discuss the evening meal, the Wife, in her unique way, asked “When do you plan to use those sweet potatoes?”. Those being the sweet potatoes that I had bought the previous Saturday, without any plan.
My response was as fake as they come. “Don’t worry dear, I have a plan.” Now the other bit of fakery. I read a blog by somebody, I know not who, about sweet potato fettuccine. Try as I did, I could not find the blog anywhere so I faked it. I apologise for the rip off.
The fake real fettuccine was made by peeling and slicing the sweet potatoes, then cutting them into fettuccine size strips with the cheese slicer.
I laid them out and seasoned them then drizzled them with olive oil. 20 minutes in the oven and it’s done.
To fake the smoked fish, first skin it.
My real fake smoked haddock used the freshest haddock (ask Han) with the smokiness coming from a dusting in seasoned flour and smoked paprika.
That fakes the smoking. Then I fried it off in a mixture of vegetable oil and butter.
That’s as real as I can make my fakery. The reality is it was excellent, tasty, toothsome even, inexpensive and simple to do. You can’t fake that.
Special mention: My friend L brought me some wonderful smoked paprika and some truly fine hot paprika from the north of Spain. He picked these up for me on one of his numerous forays into that part of the world. Once again, proof positive that excellent ingredients are needed for excellent food. Excellent friends help too.