Arthur Hill's Kedgeree
1 lb. finnan haddie (or haddock, salmon)
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 cup long-grain rice
1/3 cup sweet butter
2/3 teaspoons curry powder (according to taste)
Dash Worcestershire sauce
4 hard-cooked eggs
1/3 cup chopped watercress (or 1/4 cup washed, dried currants)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Cover fish with cold milk in saucepan. Allow milk to come to boiling point. Reduce heat, simmer slowly about 20 minutes keeping milk well below boiling point. Drain; dice or flake fish removing any bones and skin. Sprinkle fish with lemon juice. Cook rice in boiling salted water until tender but not mushy. Drain and keep warm. Melt butter in saucepan, stir in curry powder and Worcestershire sauce, blending well; cook over low heat about 1 minute. Finely chop egg white. Add rice, fish and egg white to saucepan. Heat through well. Season to taste; add watercress (or currants). To serve pack into bowl, turn out on heated platter. Top with sieved hard-cooked egg yolk, garnish with watercress (or parsley). Serve as breakfast or luncheon dish with fried toast or split oven-toasted English muffins. Serves 6.
Arthur's Thoughts: In the U.S. kedgeree can be simply made with heated leftovers (fish, chopped hard-cooked eggs) lightly tossed with rice or can be refurbished with the addition of more exotic ingredients, "sauced" and served with a flourish.
Fabrications with American and French interpretations follow:
Prepare basic recipe, substitute two 7 ounces cans albacore tuna for finnan haddie, delete currants. Rinse tuna well to remove oil by placing in sieve and hold under running water. Add cooked petits pois to rice-tuna mixture. To serve, pack kedgeree in a bowl, run in preheated 425 degree oven to "set."
Use boiled fresh (or canned) lobster meat moistened with a few tablespoons heavy cream and flavored with paprika. Serve in casserole or prepare individual buttered baking dishes (scallops or shells) topped off with buttered crumbs. Heat in 350 degree oven about 20 minutes (or until crumbs are brown).
Combine fish flakes with 1/2 cup diced boiled ham. Omit lemon juice, but moisten fish-ham-rice mixture slightly with light cream and a hint of grated nutmeg.
If turbot is in season, saute filet in butter. Prepare fish fumet using rest of the fish (head, tail and bones), dry white wine, small peeled onion stuck with whole clove, inch-piece at peeled carrot (chopped), few crushed peppercorns, salt and a sprig of thyme (fresh or diced). Moisten rice with fumet, add to turbot (flaked) and chopped egg white. Season to taste with salt, freshly ground pepper and cayenne. Heat thoroughly, blend lightly with few tablespoons browned sweet butter. Serve with wedges of cut lemon.
For French accents, prepare Bechamel sauce, thin slightly with few tablespoons heavy cream, flavor with few drops lemon juice (use lemon judiciously so as not to curdle the sauce) and freshly grated nutmeg. Add sauce to fish-rice-egg mixture.
Serve as a piquant cold buffet offering. Cook rice in garlic-flavored water. Prepare cream sauce with butter, flour, cream (or bottled clam juice) and anchovy paste. Add sauce to equal amounts of rice and fish. Fold in heavy whipped cream (or use equal amounts heavy whipped cream and sour cream), spoon into ring or round mold. Chill well several hours before serving. Turn out on glass platter. Dust well with sieved hard-cooked egg. Garnish with watercress or parsley.