Thursday, 30 August 2012

Kippers

On my honeymoon recently we stayed at a very nice B&B in Llandudno and on the breakfast menu were kippers so one morning , fed up with the usual cornflakes, muesli and banana smoothie I decided to have kippers as I remember liking them as a teenager. Indeed they were delicious and I wondered why I hadnt eaten kippers for breakfast or even for lunch, tea and supper, for so long! The only trouble with kippers is that they tend to repeat on you all day long. Kippers kippers kippers. I don't mind the hundreds of little bones - it's the repeating of kippers that really is their undoing. Kippers, there they go again. Wikipedia says - "The exact origin of kippers is unknown, though fish have been slit, gutted and smoked since time immemorial. According to Mark Kurlansky, "Smoked foods almost always carry with them legends about their having been created by accident—usually the peasant hung the food too close to the fire, and then, imagine his surprise the next morning when …". For instance Thomas Nashe wrote in 1599 about a fisherman from Lothingland in the Great Yarmouth area who discovered smoking herring by accident. Another story of the accidental invention of kipper is set in 1843, with John Woodger of Seahouses in Northumberland, when fish for processing was left overnight in a room with a smoking stove. These stories and others are known to be apocryphal because the word "kipper" long predates this. Smoking and salting of fish—in particular of spawning salmon and herring which are caught in large numbers in a short time and can be made suitable for edible storage by this practice predates 19th century Britain and indeed written history, probably going back as long as humans have been using salt to preserve food. Kippers for breakfast in England. "Cold smoked" fish, that have not been salted for preservation, need to be cooked before being eaten safely (they can be boiled, fried, grilled, jugged or roasted, for instance). "Kipper snacks," (see below) are precooked and may be eaten without further preparation. In the United Kingdom, kippers are often served for breakfast, tea or dinner. In the United States, where kippers are less commonly eaten than in the UK, they are almost always sold as either canned "kipper snacks" or in jars found in the refrigerated foods section. In Haiti, kipper is eaten with scrambled eggs for breakfast or mixed with pasta or ri Kippers are produced in the Isle of Man and exported around the world. Thousands are produced annually in the town of Peel, where two kipper houses, Moore's Kipper Yard (founded 1882) and Devereau and Son (founded 1884), smoke and export herring. Mallaig, once the busiest herring port in Europe, is famous for its traditionally smoked kippers, as well as Stornoway kippers and Loch Fyne kippers. The harbour village of Craster in Northumberland is also famed for its kippers, where they are prepared in a smokehouse, sold in the local shop and exported around the world." Kippers kippers kippers.