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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Come along and follow me to the bottom of the sea

We'll join in the Jamboree
At the Codfish ball.

OK, to be honest, we didn't go fishing, attend a  ball or even  eat codfish balls, but we did have cod for supper tonight. I used a recipe published in Bon Appetit in 2006: Baked Cod and Potatoes with Horseradish Cream Sauce. It's an easy recipe, with a minimum of dirty pots and pans and it gives me a chance to  hone my skills on the mandoline. 
 I have never been able to slice potatoes or anything else into perfectly even slices, which is  why I love my mandoline- it lets me slice a potato or  a bushel of potatoes, or other veggies into slices of exactly the same thickness so they cook evenly. And the best part is, I haven't sliced off a finger yet! My mandoline is a French-made Bron that does many things I haven't yet had the nerve to ask it to do (fear of finger-loss), but  any  good, sharp mandoline   will do the same thing, I'm sure. Here's a picture of it in action with the red potatoes for tonight's meal:
 You just set the blade for the thickness you want,  set the hand guard on its guide rails, position the potato (I cut the larger ones in half so they are easier to fit in the hopper of the hand guard) and begin slicing.  It's  best to use a steady, fast motion maintaining the proper pressure as you slide the guard. 

In no time at all  you potato slices that are of  an even thickness.

I dipped the potato slices in a mixture of mayonnaise,  mustard with horseradish and lemon  juice,  then, after  shaking the excess mixture off the potato slices, placed them in a single layer on a baking sheet and baked them in a 400 ยบ oven for about 13 minutes, until they  were just beginning to turn brown.  

Meanwhile, I dipped  two cod fillets in the same mixture, then sprinkled them with salt and pepper and placed them on  a baking sheet and baked for another  10 minutes or so until the flesh was opaque and tender. The timing will depend somewhat on the thickness of the fish.  I placed the   potatoes on the plates and topped them with the fish. I served  creamed spinach with this.

I think I might try to jazz up the sauce a little next time, it seemed  somewhat blander than I like a sauce to be-- especially one with horseradish!  Otherwise, it made a nice, easy meal. The lighting  was not good for these pics and they aren't the best quality, but they give a fair idea of how it turned out, I hope.

And about the song lyrics that opened this post- - they are the from the song, Catfish Ball, featured in the 1936 movie,  Captain January, starring  Shirley Temple (I had forgotten just how  cute and talented she was!). Here's a video of her performing the song.  See if you can guess who her dance partner is :-)

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