Masala fish: Real, real life cooking

Mallika Basu - Masala fish: Real, real life cooking

Posted 6th September 2007

masala-fish.jpgI am astounded by the BBC’s double standards.

First, they get one of the most glamorous celebrity chefs to front a new programme on real-life cooking, forcing the wealthy advertising mogul’s wife to sack her housekeeper and do her own laundry.

As if this wasn’t bad enough, she also has to travel to the supermarket to do her own food shopping. Thank god for taxis and the upmarket Waitrose.

And then there’s the outrageous menu.

While the British Government peddles fears about an obesity crisis, we are lovingly shown how to create deep-fried suppers with garlic mayonnaise and a heavy mustard cream sauce to accompany pan-fried pork chops.

As the cream submerged the meat, the presenter sultrily said “comforting, elegant and easy”. Fattening came to mind.

What a disservice courtesy the nation’s public service broadcaster!

Here are my thoughts for the BBC’s future cooking programming: Real life cooking is done by real life people, who:

  • Have full-time jobs, unpaid at home and paid at work, both exhausting
  • Take public transport to food shops or drive – both are fraught with difficulty
  • Are increasingly worrying about their diets and meals

I switched the programme off when the caramel croissant pudding was flagged up and made masala fish for dinner.

It takes 20 minutes to prepare and you can eat it with any vegetables or a salad. Real life cooking by a really normal person.

This recipes serves 2:

2 skinless and boneless fish fillets (I used salmon)

Juice of half a lemon

1 tsp chilli powder

1 tsp turmeric powder

Salt to taste

1 tsp butter (I used margarine that tastes like butter)

Turn the grill on to preheat it to a medium heat. In a little bowl combine the lemon juice, salt, turmeric and chilli powders to make a strong marinade.

Line a baking tray with kitchen foil and place the fish fillets on top. Drizzle the marinade all over and leave to rest for five minutes.

Then put half a teaspoon of butter on each fillet and place the baking tray under the grill for 10-12 minutes until the fish is cooked through but still moist.

I ate this with the jeera aloo I made earlier.

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