Friday, April 12, 2013

Sea Meat

"I'm feeling like a seal who's been fed pasta for the last six months," I grumbled to my Mum recently. "I'm getting to the stage where I'm threatening to buy some fresh fish from Grievous."
That idea was so subversive that it forced me to chuck a line in at the channel, with Stormboy and his girl sipping tea from the thermos and eating lollies. Line fishing has nothing on net fishing from a boat. I caught one suicidal sweep and fed it to the cat.

I had lunch today (goat cheese, prosciutto and pear pizza with a balsamic drizzle) with a friend who said that our bodies are programmed to respond to their childhood diets. I haven't been netting for ages now and my body has been screaming for fresh fish. As kids we ate from the fish factory where Dad worked as a mechanic. We ate kangaroo gleaned free or cheap from the shooters in return for fresh fish. I've forgiven the pressure-cooked pumpkin and cabbage so limply lacking in love and cooked up by a careworn wife. These days, I would be happily vegetarian but for the wild meat of my childhood: kangaroo, rabbits and the fish.

While sailing from Esperence to Albany, K was 'cleaning out his veins' of salt, sugar, fat and all the other nasties. So we ate:
Oats soaked with chia seed and grated raw ginger
Salted herring (sorry K, not for you)
Poached herring
Lemon soused herring
Smoked herring
Raw tuna soaked in port, black pepper and lemon juice
Smoked tuna
Roe abalone fried up in chilli infused olive oil, drizzled with lime. Here is a photo of that feed.

Smoked bonito
Tuna green curry
Bonito red curry
Flathead in lemon sauce
Shark flakes chucked into a pan. (I missed the great shark catch -  the giant mako whose heavenly makers made Hemingway look like Justin Bieber, or so it was related to me.)
Tuna flesh. My way was to slice away the meat, flip it over and skin it, put the fillets in a pile with the rest. Then I worked on cutting away the thin strips of translucent meat that I'd neglected close to the bone. Dropped it into my mouth before anyone saw.

I consider myself cured.


  1. I can totally relate to most of this post, including the memories of pressure-cooked cabbage!

    Your salty sailing diet sounds fantatic, I love a good herring :)

  2. Ahh sister. Do you remember the kangaroo tails?
    It was a great diet while sailing. I was fed well.

  3. What gourmet diet! Very different from the mountains of pasta & meat sauce we consumed on our sailing voyages.

  4. We had chicken curry one night... I found myself really hungry on the boat, ate fish and fruit all day.