What does ‘salt to taste’ mean again?

I can’t cook. I know this and have made my peace with it. My family has a live-in cook (who’s become part of the family) so meals during my childhood to university were taken care of. I never had to step into the kitchen, and when I tried to help out, I found that I was just in the way. In college, I stayed in a residential house where food was already prepared and served. Then when I started working, I lived extensively on take-out, maggi noodles and pasta.When I got tired of that, I’d go out to eat. So, I’ve never exactly made a meal (well, a healthy meal) from scratch. I’m never really considered that a failing. I plan to always surround myself with friends who like to cook and if I decide to get married, that poor man will have to have a fondness for the kitchen.

Then however, I got food poisoned from a Dominoes pizza of all things. I’d decided to be adventurous and ordered a vegetarian pizza for the first time. Then I got food poisoned, dehydrated and had to be admitted to the hospital for the week. It was during one of those days, when the nurse was injected a noxious chemical into my IV, that I decided to change my life forever, and learn to make food that was edible, and that would presumably save me from any return-trips to the hospital. That was 6 months ago, and I still hadn’t so much as cut up a tomato.

So, after a lecture or two, I forced myself to well, stop being lazy. My mum showed me how to make fried fish. It’s a very simple recipe and after watching her make the dish, I made a smaller sample. If I can make this, then *anyone* can:

Fried Fish (for two pieces of fish)IMG_6819

1) Wash and clean the fish.
2) In a separate bowl, add ginger paste.
3) Add a spoonful of turmeric powder and chilli powder.
4) Take some tamarind pieces and squeeze it into a small bowl of water. Add this to the paste and powders.
5) Add salt
6) Mix the ingredients together. You should get a colorful masala. You can taste it to figure out whether you need to add more salt or chilli.
7) Apply the masala to the fish and leave it to marinate for around 90 minutes.
8) Put oil in the pan and then fry the fish.
9) Based on the fish, it should take around 5-8 minutes to cook each fish. You’ll know that the fish is cooked when the skin starts turning an orange-brown.

It’s as simple as that. If you aren’t able to use tamarind, you can use lime.Based on tasting the first fried fish, you can also adjust the salt or chilli amount according to your taste. This recipe is easy to follow and is not harmful to health. I made fried fish this afternoon and have not died as yet.

Great success.

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