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2005.11.16

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pieman

What a charming trip. I like reading holiday highlights like this. Does the place you stayed at have a website?

I far prefer small mussels than the big ones you describe. I think I adhere to the Asian thing that the smaller it is the more flavour/strength etc. it holds. Moules Mariniere certainly tastes better the smaller the mussels are, IMO.

As for the fried fish. It looks like a classy, well done deal. However, I would say this dish needs to be enjoyed in boggin' miserable British weather and wrapped in newspaper eaten sitting on a damp bench overlooking a distinctly uninviting grim seascape.

Fish n chips is an interesting thing. The batter is an incredibly fine art. To my tastes the texture has to show a bit more ripple or 'give' than the one you pictured. Having said that, some of the very finest fish n chips in the UK - http://www.english-restaurants.com/english/areas/restaurant.asp?catID=10&classID=72 - comes served in a similar fashion to this. I just like a ripple batter effect. it's a personal thing.

And yes, oysters are bivalves. God bless them.

Catherine

Oh, Robyn, I am green with envy! The Fates must have had you in their sites: stone fruit - check; fava beans - check; artichokes - check, and on and on. I love the bugs, they look like wee crawfish -- I assume they're some relation to those and/or lobsters? And thank you for posting on Oz. I'm eager to read all about Sydney.

Catherine

er, sights.

Robyn

Pieman -- well, the fish was enjoyed on an overcast, rain-threatening, coolish day. Would that do?
I figured you'd want to weigh in on the fish and chips. The only version I've had was in Hong Kong, quite a long time ago. It was good, but a bit greasy ... with much more "ripple" effect. Rick Stein did the dish once on one of his shows and showed a mouthwatering specimen served at his restaurant -- with mushy peas? It was also lighter colored and more ripply. Looked delicious. A specialty worth seeking out.

I'm editing the post to provide a link to the cottage. Would be the perfect place to take a tot.

Catherine -- no need to be envious! Girl, you've got it all right in your own backyard (except maybe the bugs). My handy seafood guide says they are a variety of slipper lobster. Once you remove the head and crack the belly you get a piece of meat roughly 2.5 inches wide and about 3.5 inches long. Much sweeter than lobster -- and more shellfish with less work! I forgot to mention in my post that 20 of these beauties (way more than enough for two) cost all of 11 AUD!

pieman

No. Fish n chips should never be greasy. It often is of course, but it shouldn't be.

It is very common in the UK, but rarely good. Most British towns have one chippy that seems to be universally hailed as the best one by locals. Often run by Italians in my experience. And people will travel for it.

Folk in Edinburgh often head to Anstruther - http://www.flickr.com/photos/noodlepie/40707203/ - specifically for the fish n chips, for instance. That's an hour or so drive.

It's a much maligned, but deceptively simple dish. I've never managed to do a decent one and I don't know anyone who has cracked it.

Sticky

Robyn - I reckon that fish might be either whiting or flake(shark) but the batter looks like a fine kind of crumbing, doesn't it?
I love that kind of trip where you can just pull up wherever you fancy, pick up a bit of produce and cook something nice for dinner.
Look forward to the rest of the tales from your trip.

Robyn

Sticky -- ah, you'd be another fish and chips expert, I would guess.
Hmmm... I've never seen a crumb coating hold together this well, but perhaps you're right. I guess I should have stepped out of vacation mode for a moment and popped my head in to check out what was happening pre-fryer.
The thing about Oz is -- we didn't have one nasty or even mediocre thing to eat there (and we ate a lot). That's the sort of place I could stand to do a loooong road trip in.

sidherian

Berry isn't outback, which traditionally begins "back of Burke". Anything that close to the sea and with lots of trees isn't the bush.
But Berry is very pretty and the food around there is great.
What am I saying, most of the food in Oz is great : )

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