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Sunday, April 19, 2009

Kaimoana Part 3: Te Kai

So I know you've been asking yourself: "How on earth is he going to cook those chips?" and you're expecting something absolutely profound and unpredictable.

The short answer is "Not Very Well."

That's not to say "Badly", but when your only task on the day (apart from barbequing all that fish, so painstakingly caught and crumbed) is to cook the chips, and the nearest deep fryer is an hour's drive away along with the nearest conventional oven, you might understand how I was wondering how on earth I was going to pull it off.

Bring on the Dutch Oven. (No, not that kind. That's just gross.)
With a generous quantity of oil in the bottom of a couple of these wonders of aluminium technology (not recommended for long-term applications, mind you) a kilogram of chips can be convinced to fit nicely, ready for cooking.
Light a good old campfire in the brick fireplace outside under the old Puriri tree, and let it burn down to hot embers. Place the Camp Ovens into the embers and shovel coals over the top.

The trick after that is getting the lids off without spilling ash into the Camp Oven, in order to stir the chips up, so that they don't burn on the bottom. Let's just say that I managed this with varying degrees of success, but decided not waste memory stick proving it.

And they all got eaten, so they must've been OK.

Or at least edible.

Or everyone was just being very polite.
And here it is, Te Kai. Crumbed fish, fresh from the bay behind the camera. The dark shape resting on top of the fish is paua, taken fresh from the rocks the same day (abalone, to my northern readers), bashed tender, floured and fried in oil. Behind them, the cockles (clams) gathered off the tidal flats down the coast a short distance that afternoon, and on the right, the famous Flame-Fried Chips.

That was such a good feed it's almost sad to have put so much time into writing about it, knowing that I'm hundreds of kilometres and several months from the possibility of having a meal like that again.

Yum Yum *sigh*

Coming up, the last installment in the Holiday Kai Series (It's good how I come up with these names at the end of the series, isn't it?): Blackberry Crumble made with foraged blackberries and cooked bush style.

Cripes, I'm hungry now.

1 comment:

Wanisan said...

Nw I've seen everything. Chips on a camping trip? I would never even try that one over coals. But I suppose it'd be possible to do it, but I would have done it the conventional way, without the lid, so all the steam could get away. That's the time!