Right before summer break while I was in middle school, our small private school took us on a fishing field trip. We went to the state park and fished along the muddy banks of a brown river. Not a thrilling sight for a girl who has never fished before. Dad had supplied me with his rod and reel and a tackle box full of hooks and lures. There was no way I was going to skewer a worm to the end of my hook. The boys taught me how to cast, and pretty soon I got the hang of it. However, I didn’t catch anything. Many of us got our hooks stuck in the muddy underworld. A kid fished out an old high top sneaker. Some of the other boys finally did catch fish (they used live bait) before the end of the day.
While I was growing up we lived in the country surrounded by green hills, black, brown and spotted cattle, clay and dirt roads. Dad built our house and dug a man-made lake. Every once in a while my brother would fish. When Mom and Dad’s friends from Phoenix came to visit, they would fish and we would cook the catch for dinner.
The most sought after and cooked fish in the country (at least that part of the country) was catfish. Any down home cooking restaurant had fried catfish on the menu. Even this upscale country steak house whose filet mignon and real blue cheese dressing rivaled those offered in the big city, served many customers who hungered for fried catfish. All that to say, one doesn’t often find sole, cod, rainbow trout, red snapper or salmon in any of the local restaurants.
The other day I thumbed through an old cookbook I had that was propped on my shelf collecting dust. There I found a recipe for cod: Roast Cod Wrapped in Prosciutto with Vine Tomatoes.
Wrapping chunky fillets of cod in wafer-thin slices of prosciutto keeps the fish succulent and moist, at the same time adding flavour and visual impact.
I went to the grocery store and purchased two pounds of thick skinless cod fillets and tried out the recipe. I served the cod over a bed of baby kale. The fish certainly was moist; the tomatoes burst, releasing their juices, and the prosciutto did give the fish added flavor.
Recipe adapted from *Four Ingredient Cookbook by Joanna Farrow.
*Farrow, Joanna. Four Ingredient Cookbook. London: Hermes House, 2004. Print.