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"What I want for dinner is a bass fished in Lake Huron in 1920" -William Burroughs
March 19, 2012 9:43 PM   Subscribe

Classic seafood and fish recipes, from a time when it was cheap and plentiful, and often cured in salt.
posted by Brian B. (26 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite

 
Take a grown chicken, fifty oysters, and a half-pound of ham to flavor the gombo.

Yes, yes I will.
posted by StickyCarpet at 10:00 PM on March 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Not just fish. He has recipies for muskrat and head cheese too.
posted by unliteral at 10:00 PM on March 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Smothered muskrat love, baby!
posted by Splunge at 10:32 PM on March 19, 2012 [1 favorite]




Metafilter: butter may then be applied, so as to render it grateful.
posted by The Whelk at 10:57 PM on March 19, 2012 [6 favorites]


Well, here's one from a different era in the annals of heart disease:
LOBSTER À LA NEWBURG
("The Settlement" Cook-Book, 1903)

The meat of two lobsters cut into one-inch pieces, placed into sauce pan with one ounce fresh butter, salt, cayenne pepper (two truffles cut into dice are a great improvement). Cook five minutes, add one wineglass Madeira, reduce to half by boiling three minutes.

Beat three yolks with one-half pint cream, and stir it into the above mixture. Shuffle lightly two minutes until all is blended, and serve on toast.
Cook lobster - two of 'em - in butter, then drown 'em in eggs and cream. Good god, you'd have to bury me right there because there'd be no getting up after that. I'd die happy, though.
posted by gompa at 11:20 PM on March 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Eh, eggs, butter and cream really aren't bad for you. It's when you easy copious amounts for every meal that it could become a problem. And that eggs are bad for you at all is pretty disputed.
posted by Malice at 11:40 PM on March 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Easy = eat*

Damn Swype.
posted by Malice at 11:41 PM on March 19, 2012


Loads of ads and some popups on there, but neat site otherwise. Interesting that there's a fish curry recipe from 1845.

Also this:

Take six large crabs, throw them in cold water for a few moments.

When cool cut off the limbs—while they are living if possible, as this renders them more delicate;


:(
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 11:50 PM on March 19, 2012


Man, with the Gulf spill and all the Corexit they dumped in the water, plus all the spills in other waters, plus Fukushima, I carefully avoid seafood these days. I don't particularly trust labels to be accurate about where seafood came from... that would be an easy thing to lie about, and were they to do so, I see no particular sign that anyone is checking, or that any punishment would ensue if they were actually caught.

So I just avoid all seafood, period, which is a bummer.
posted by Malor at 1:26 AM on March 20, 2012


Off the coast of Newfoundland, fish used to be so plentiful that you could dip a basket into the water and come up with it full, and that fish were "so thick by the shore that we hardly have been able to row a boat through them".

The Guardian shows the relative decline in Atlantic stocks over the last 100 years here.

Pretty scary.
posted by notseamus at 4:48 AM on March 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Awesome! These are great. There are some seriously hardcore recipies in this mix. I think this summer's theme is going to be period seafood dinners.

@Brian B. I'm pretty sure my wife is going to hate you.
posted by Nanukthedog at 5:12 AM on March 20, 2012


Cook lobster - two of 'em - in butter, then drown 'em in eggs and cream. Good god, you'd have to bury me right there because there'd be no getting up after that. I'd die happy, though.
And yet rates of heart disease at the time these sorts of recipes were common were far lower than they are now. Makes you wonder.
posted by peacheater at 6:54 AM on March 20, 2012


Prices change. Supposedly, you could always tell the poor kids in Tasmania: they always had lobster sandwiches because they couldn't afford Vegemite.
posted by hawthorne at 7:08 AM on March 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Loads of ads and some popups on there, but neat site otherwise.

Pruitt-Igoe, are you that guy I heard about who's still using Internet Explorer?

Oh, and Brian B. - I love you. A lot. Thanks for this thread.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:16 AM on March 20, 2012


peacheater: And yet rates of heart disease at the time these sorts of recipes were common were far lower than they are now. Makes you wonder.

Physical activity levels were much higher, too. Poor kids working in factories could drag many of today's WOW high-scorers across the finish line. The heart is a muscle, and no amount of bran muffins will make it healthy.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:18 AM on March 20, 2012


This weekend, do yourself a favour and have ackee and saltfish.

For many years, Cod from Newfoundland was salted, dried on racks and then shipped down to Jamaica where it was traded for rum. The Jamaicans add it to a saute of onions, sweet and hot peppers, thyme, tomato and an a weird, potentially poisonous berry that originated in West Africa. It's the national dish of Jamaica.

In Toronto, I get mine at Gerry's Fast Food on St. Clair West. Usually available Friday and Saturday mornings. A side of rice, boiled plantane and dumplings is traditional but I like rice and peas.
posted by bonobothegreat at 7:31 AM on March 20, 2012


IAmBroom: Safari on iPhone (iOS 5.1). There's ads all around the recipes, and I got a Netflix popup the first time I clicked a recipe.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 7:42 AM on March 20, 2012


Sorry, Pruitt-Igoe. FF 9.0.1 w/ad-blocker & popups disabled: I got neither ads nor pop-ups.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:49 AM on March 20, 2012


So much deliciousness. Thanks Brian B.

This weekend, do yourself a favour and have ackee and saltfish.

I'm in walking distance of a West Indian take-away and haven't had lunch yet, so I don't think I'll wait for the weekend.

Ackee is just the most peculiar thing - the scrambled egg of the fruit world!
posted by jack_mo at 8:05 AM on March 20, 2012


When I worked at Mystic Seaport I used to love a dish made for demonstrations in the galley of the fishing schooner. It was called "House Banking," and was a saute' of bacon, onions, salt cod, potatoes, and cream. This all formed a transcendent, rich, smoky, salty stew that was an incredibly delicious lunch in a woodstove-heated galley on a winter day when it was sleeting sideways.
posted by Miko at 8:47 AM on March 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


(House Banking. That link isn't the greatest but did yield the same recipe under the name Dutch Mess.)
posted by Miko at 8:49 AM on March 20, 2012


And yet rates of heart disease at the time these sorts of recipes were common were far lower than they are now. Makes you wonder.

The recipes were common in the past, the ability for most Westerners to buy as much fat, sugar and salt as we want is largely modern. I think the relevant change is largely the economic one. Also, lots of people just never got old enough for heart disease to be their major health risk.
posted by howfar at 9:59 AM on March 20, 2012


i'm curious, what is salt cod like? i've had chinese dried salted fish in fried rice, which in small amounts is ok, but too much can get unappealingly pungent.
posted by mlo at 2:53 PM on March 20, 2012


You have to soak salt cod - and if it's dried salt cod, soak it twice - but after that it's surprisingly fluffy, like medium cooked salmon. It is pretty salty, but I like it for the flavor which is more bacon-y than fishy.
posted by Miko at 3:38 PM on March 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


the scrambled egg of the fruit world!

That strikes me as a pretty ringing endorsement, but maybe I like scrambled eggs a little bit too much.
posted by brennen at 8:53 PM on March 20, 2012


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