Buljol is a Trinidadian dish Mr FTF introduced me to and it is a breakfast regular there. Actually, it’s made with salt fish and it has a distinctive flavour which I love. Provided I manage to source a good quality one over here. Although, salt fish is quite messy and laborious to prepare: it includes soaking in warm water then removing the bones and bear in mind not to soak it too long or your meal will be flaky and tasteless. Because it’s bony, it doesn’t matter how much attention you give to removing them from the flesh, some will always find its way onto your plate.
All this effort will reward you with a very unique taste; seaside salty air, tangy, fleshy and lip smacking. Don’t mind the occasional bone.
We’re quite busy though and salt fish is a treat so I tried it out with smocked mackerel once and that was a hit! The bones were way easier to clean. Even my Trini mother-in-law loved it. So here we go.
You need to discard the mackerel skin and shred the flesh with your fingers. Then slice finely tomatoes and onion. The ratio of ingredients depends on your choice. I prefer less onion more tomatoes. Then season it with pepper, salt (taste before you add any as smocked mackerel is already quite salty) and add olive oil to make the mix moist. Let the flavours blend for some time in the fridge and serve at breakfast or lunch with avocadoes or side dish of your choice. Trinis would serve it with local breads mostly called bakes.
As we keep an eye on our grain intake, we serve it with cassava, eddoes, sweet potatoes or even chips. Today was chips with Polish mayonnaise, a favourite of Mr FTF.
You have to be careful with processed chips. Most have wheat or maize flour to give a crunch and the list of additives can be quite long. I found just one that I use in a pinch that has just potatoes coated with sunflower oil. When I make it from scratch I use goose or duck fat. Simply the best!!
- smocked mackerel
- 1 small onion
- olive oil
- black pepper to taste
Smocked mackerel – http://goo.gl/SHpWu9
Polish Mayonnaise – http://goo.gl/2SvB65
Chips – http://goo.gl/T2vELg