Typical, isn't it, that the night before mackerel makes top news - over-fished, just like that - I cook it for supper? Delicious it was, too, with its silvery skin still on and its blue, mottled sheen swimming through the soup. But no longer, and I will miss it, alas. A quick ode to the mackerel.
I'll say 'til when, to you, oh silvered jewel.
I will scoop you back with a fishy kiss,
and stir you into this lovely dish.
This noodle broth welcomes other sustainable fish. Try it, instead, with herring, sardine or dab - or search here for help on which goodly water-creature to choose.
POACHED FISH AND KOHLRABI NOODLE BROTH
1 tbsp groundnut oil
1 shallot, finely sliced
1/2 red chilli, finely sliced
1/2 garlic clove, finely sliced
10 fennel seeds
700ml fresh fish stock
1 star anise
1 tbsp nam pla fish sauce
1/2 tbsp soy sauce
4 fillets of sea-fished sustainable fish (300g), pin-boned
200g ribbon rice noodles
200g kohlrabi, finely cut into matchsticks
Tsuru: eat the bits or chilli oil to serve (optional)
Heat the oil in a large saucepan and add the shallot. Fry gently for 2 minutes until soft, then add the chilli, garlic and fennel seeds. Cook for another minute until fragrant. Pour in the fish stock and add the star anise with the nam pla and soy sauce. Simmer for 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, soak the noodles in boiling water until tender, or according to packet instructions, then drain under cold water.
Slice the fish into chunks and add to the pan, along with the kohlrabi. The fish will instantly begin to poach and become flaky.
Stir the noodles into the broth to heat, then serve into deep bowls, dividing up the fish and noodles equally.
Spoon a little of the Tsuru chilli oil on top of the soup and slurp.