My mother is very proud that in her 82nd year, she still has 28 of her own teeth, with no fancy dentistry or replacement teeth.

“We were poor, but we ate fish everyday,” she declared, proud and thankful of the fact that her father was a fisherman.  “You don’t eat enough fish,” she told me, and I had to admit, grudgingly, that she was right. My repertoire when it comes to fish is shockingly narrow, normally just grilled salmon with some sort of dressing, or sashimi at Japanese restaurants.

So today we drove to the local fishmonger:

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I stepped out of my comfort zone and bought five plump mackerels, which the fishmonger (Mr Bradley) obligingly cleaned out for me.  He also gave me free hake skeleton to make into fish stock (though he sells fish stock for £2.95). “Yes, people should eat more fish,” he said.

I grilled the mackerel and dressed it generously with lemon juice, parsley, sea salt and freshly ground pepper, and topped with chopped spring onions and parsley leaves. So here’s my simple, nutritious family supper, served with couscous and a side salad:

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Note: from my hake skeleton, I made a fish stock which is used as a base for this Asian rice porridge, with some fish called monk’s cheeks (???):


How to make fish stock: Making fish stock

And other fish recipes: Milky fish noodles and Peix sec – Catalan dried fish