Canned mackerel is one food that is eaten by many Jamaicans. It comes in three sizes. It was one of the cheapest protein foods in Jamaica but due to the rise it cost of living its cost has been slowly rising. The food is a good source of protein and calcium; the bones are processed soft enough to be eaten.
Mackerel in tomato sauce is the favorite of many Jamaicans.
Although it is also canned in brine or oil the one in tomato sauce is the one that makes Grace money because Jamaicans love very spicy foods. The Jamaican sea water do not have enough of this type of fish for processing so the fish is imported but it is prepared and packed in Jamaica. Sometimes in life many grand things are born out of hardship and such is this special mackerel recipe. My son is a lover of meat and on Sundays it had to be beef or chicken but his first choice is beef.
This particular Sunday I faced a dilemma I had no meat and no money to buy any. I determined that I was going to serve rice and peas, potato salad a fresh toss vegetable salad, canned mackerel and a fruit drink and my son was going to eat it and would not know it was not meat
This is how this great mackerel recipe was born. It was so good and he loved it. I decided I would share it with the world. I have not even given it a name as yet however by the time I am finished with this article I hope to come up with one if not you can have the pleasure of giving it a name.
1. 1 large canned mackerel in tomato sauce 2. 1 Tbsp. fish sauce 3. 1 large onion finely chopped 4.4 clove garlic finely diced 5.½ scotch bonnet pepper 6.1 Maggie beef bullion 7.1 tbsp. soy sauce 8.¼ tsp. rosemary 9.¼ tsp. thyme leaves 10. ¼ tsp. black pepper 11.2 egg whites 12.½ cup flour 13.!/2 tsp vinegar 14.1cup oil
Drain the tomato sauce from off the mackerel and set aside for sauce Use a fork and flake the mackerel until fine. Add all the ingredients except the flour and oil and stir. Add the flour a little at a time until you get a firm dough that can be shaped Break off a piece of the dough flatten to 1/4 inch thick and shape into 3 x 4 ½ inch It should look like beef stakes. Roll into flour and fry until golden brown. Use up the rest of the dough until you have at least 10- 12 of the mocked beef mackerel stakes. If you do not mind the taste of the mackerel you can use the tomato sauce you strained off to make the sauce. But if you are really trying to disguise the mackerel begin your sauce from scratch by using
1 tbsp. flour, 1 tsp. butter, Cook over a low fire. Add some ¼ cup garlic tomato paste. Add one cup boiling water stir Season to taste with salt, celery, thyme. Pour over the mackerel and serve. Garnish with thick sauté onions slices and scotch bonnet peppers.
Serve 4-5 persons
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Juliet Christie Murray is a Jamaican Teacher. at present she is a vice principal in a Jamaican High School Author of two inspirational books and web master of http://specular-jamaica.com. and http://blackwomenandtheirhair.blogspot.com