Cookingbites Recipe Challenge: Mackerel

Discussion in 'Competitions & Challenges, Questions & Quizzes' started by epicuric, Dec 1, 2018.

  1. epicuric

    epicuric Über Member Staff Member

    Shropshire, UK
    Welcome to the latest Cookingbites Recipe Challenge - Mackerel, chosen because it's in season at the moment (here at least), it's available fresh, pretty much all around the world, it's a healthy and sustainable food, and it's.quite a challenge!

    With its sparkling, silvery belly and iridescent blue-grey stripes, the mackerel is an eye-catching fish, almost showy. It's bound to be the subject of enviously dismissive gossip amongst shoals of less flashy sardine and cod.

    The mackerel isn't a delicately flavoured fish and its richness doesn't always lend itself well to a simple 'lemon and herbs' pairing. But given the right treatment it is a fantastically moist, flavoursome fish that makes an inexpensive and very healthy meal.

    The mackerel has been a consistently popular fish throughout European history. The Romans used mackerel to make garum, a fermented fish sauce similar to those essential to Thai and Vietnamese cooking today. I tried to total how many varieties of mackerel there are worldwide, but lost count somewhere north of forty

    I'm pretty sure most members will have access to it fresh, but if not tinned or preserved will do just fine. As an absolute fallback, other oily fish such as tuna or sardine can be substituted.

    The challenge will run for four weeks, ending at 12:00 GMT on Saturday 29th December. To enter, all you need to do is post a recipe as a new thread, tag it "CookingBites Recipe Challenge" and post a link to it in this thread.

    Challenge rules and a list of previous winners and ingredients can be found here.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 1, 2018
  2. MypinchofItaly

    MypinchofItaly Über Member Recipe Challenge Judge

    Great. I really love mackerel.
    buckytom and epicuric like this.
  3. Herbie

    Herbie Senior Member

    Love mackerel. Good choice.
    buckytom and epicuric like this.
  4. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    An immense challenge for me @epicuric as I simply cannot eat this fish. It has an odd affect on my stomach due to its oily nature. That of course, will not prevent me from entering the challenge!
  5. epicuric

    epicuric Über Member Staff Member

    Shropshire, UK
    Sorry, I had no idea. Is it just mackerel, or all oily fish?
  6. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    All of them really! Although oddly, I can eat smoked salmon and tinned tuna with no ill affects. I also love anchovies which I think are an oily fish. No need to apologise it will be good practice for me - I can't call myself a serious home cook if I'm not prepared to cook certain things just because I can't eat them. Anyway - luckily my partner likes mackerel as does my friend who I often cook for.

    I was thinking of vegan/vegetarian substitutes as well - jackfruit might work flavoured with vegan 'fish' sauce and with oil added - particularly in a 'pâté'.
    epicuric likes this.
  7. rascal

    rascal Senior Member

    Never cooked mackerel, can't see myself cooking it in the near future, just not big on fish, except blue cod. If I did I would open the fish up spatchcock style and do a light Garam masala dusting and chargrilled it over charcoal.

  8. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    For a non fish lover that sounds like a good recipe. :okay:
  9. buckytom

    buckytom Über Member

    Hmm, there are several kinds of mackerel. I'm guessing all are included.

    Unfortunately, I've only had mackerel either tinnned, pickled, or caught (by myself or family) that day and cooked simply. Panko breaded and fried, or blackened in a restaurant near the dock.
    morning glory likes this.
  10. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    We are longing for you to enter a challenge @buckytom. Any type of mackerel... simply cooked is often best with fish. :)
  11. buckytom

    buckytom Über Member

    The problem is accomplishing the feat while the challenge is going on.

    I have great ideas and the best intentions to make the dish and photograph it, but as my dad used to growl, "The road to hell is paved with good intentions".
    rascal likes this.
  12. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    You have a whole 4 weeks... :)
  13. buckytom

    buckytom Über Member

    And I have 3 nights off in that time. :banghead:
  14. morning glory

    morning glory Obsessive cook Staff Member

    Madness... you need more down time. Seriously.
    rascal likes this.
  15. buckytom

    buckytom Über Member


    I'll be fine, Lois.


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