Ackee and Saltfish with Cornmeal Muffins

Ainsley cooks up salt cod with style, in his tasty version of this fabulous Caribbean classic
By Ainsley Harriott
Ackee and Saltfish with Cornmeal Muffins
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Prep Time: plus 30 mins preparation
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

main

  • 500 g salt cod
  • 50 g butter
  • 1 onion, finely sliced
  • 2 spring onions, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 green pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 red chilli, finely sliced (optional)
  • 2 sprig thyme
  • 625 g tinned ackee, drained
  • 3 tomatoes, cut into wedges
  • 2 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 eggs, hard-boiled and cut into wedges, to garnish

For the Corn Meal Muffins:

  • 225 g self-raising flour
  • 100 g fine cornmeal
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • pinches salt
  • 75 g butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 175 ml milk

Method

1. Cover the codfish with cold water and soak overnight or for a minimum of 2 hours, changing the water several times. Drain, place in a saucepan with cold water and bring to the boil. Cover and cook gently for 15 - 20 minutes, until the fish is tender.

2. Lift the fish carefully out of the water using a slotted spoon. Remove the skin and bones and flake the flesh.

3. Melt butter in a frying pan and gently fry the onions, garlic, peppers, chilli and thyme until softened. Stir in the flaked fish.

4. Gently fold in the ackees, being careful not to break them up too much.
Add the tomato wedges, sprinkle on the chopped parsley and season well with black pepper. Continue cooking until heated through.

5. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with the boiled egg.

6. To make the cornmeal muffins, lightly butter a deep 12 cup muffin tray and set the oven to 180°C/gas4.

7. Sieve the dry ingredients into a large bowl and make a well in the centre.

8. Mix the butter, egg and milk together and pour into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles a thick batter, adding a little extra milk if required.

9. Spoon the mixture into the muffin tray and bake for 20 minutes until golden brown and springy to the touch.

10. Serve the hot ackee and saltfish together with the warm muffins.

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