Dried out, splayed fish.|
- 1 fish (cod) weighing between a pound and a pound and a half
- 1 generous pound salt
Peixe-Seco is often not eaten on its own due to its extremely salty taste. A form of salt-dried fish supposedly originating with the recovered recipes of a sea hag by a Bragacao mythical hero, the fish is valued and used as a key ingredient in multiple dishes across the wide range of Bragacao cuisine.
Peixe-Seco is commonly held as a Bragacao creation, though the truth of this is somewhat obscure. It is far more likely that Proto-Daens, escaped slaves, and more kept some of their fish in cold locations in an effort to preserve it while living in rugged, isolated terrain. Gradually over time, this process likely grew more sophisticated, and the vast quantity of Daen salt allowed for the ease of preservation. However, the Bragacao people vociferously claim it was created from scratch by a chef-warrior named Reo. The origin myth is that for years, the town of Ribei was unable to keep their fish for longer than a day. No preservation method worked for them, forcing their catches and meals to be eaten immediately, and disallowing them to store anything for the future. They claimed the sea hag Navya worked her Magic on behalf of “the god of the deep” which some have interpreted as Morrlond, the Unwritten God of the Fin’ullen Altalar. Regardless of this detail, one day a traveler from afar, apparently a former slave of the Altalar, arrived to seek work. His name was Reo, and the townsfolk directed this stranger to the cave in exchange for all their valuables. He then served up a cold dish of revenge from the townspeople by defeating Navya. With her defeat, he apparently discovered a cave full of salt, and indeed, the cliffs and area around Ribei to this day remain well populated with salt mines. He then returned and taught the people to preserve their fish, having taken the method from the defeated witch so no one could ever deny them fish in a meal again. Since that time, this method of preparing fish has been widespread across all Southland Cultures, and the fish preserved in this manner keep for weeks, if not months, and are incorporated into a wide array of dishes regional to the Bragacao. As a result, it has remained a highly relevant and thriving industry for many fishermen to also preserve some of their catches in this way, both for markets and for their own dining tables.
Peixe-Seco has a simple creation process, much like many other preserved types of meat, but also an extremely long one. The fish should be cleaned with water after being filleted and patted dry. A portion of the salt should then be laid out on a flat surface, or in a container, forming a base layer. No part of the base should be exposed so that when the fish is laid on top, none of it is touching the surface beneath the salt. The fish should then be covered in the remains of the salt. More fish can be placed next to the existing one, and even stacked once, on top of this base fish. The fish and salt should then be sealed in a cold location for at minimum two days, but three days maximum. Once recovered, the fillet should again be rinsed with water and patted dry, before being wrapped in cheesecloth and left in a less cold location. It should be there for up to two weeks before being removed, whereupon it is able to be used in a variety of dishes.
- Peixe-Seco looks like filleted and stretched-out fish, with an almost bleached, all-white coloration.
- The food has a very salty smell, with very little of the scent of fish being able to make it through due to all of the drying out, and coating of salt.
- On its own, the preserved fish has an extremely salty taste. It is never eaten raw, except by the desperate, truly poor, or scavengers.
- Peixe-Seco can also be made to be acceptable to the Teledden Altalar through the use of Ulpa, the salt-like derivative from Ullaline.
HydraLana on 01/9/2021.|
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