Countrymans Diary

The Wild Food.

The Wild Food Catering Co.

 

Bringing the best of nature to your kitchen.

 

 

For those that don’t know me, my name is Cai ap Bryn. Born in Snowdonia North Wales and eventually ended up on the south coast of England 18 years ago. I now live just outside Canterbury in Kent.

 

I am the Director of The Wild Food Catering Company and you will see me at most game fairs through out the UK this year including the CLA and Midland selling Venison burgers, pulled boar sandwiches and pigeon breast wraps!

 

I have always been an adventurer, I have loved the outdoors since I can remember, fishing and cooking from the age of 6!

 

I love hunting, I love being outside and harvesting wild meat and food from the wild. There is something about the connection to nature and the connection to our great ancestors that lives with in us all.

 

As humans it is fair to say we would not be here to this day if we did not hunt and gather vital food sources for our community, using the meat to feed us and the fur to keep us warm, I truly believe this instinct runs through us even in this technological age of computers fast cars and hi speed internet.

 

As a child, one of my fondest memories was fishing in the river  Afon Dwyryd in Maentwrog, North Wales, “Twrog” was a giant in the Welsh mythology the Mabinogion and “Maen” means stone. Legend has it the Twrog threw the stone down into the village and the boulder still resides there to this very day.

 

I remember we spent hours in the early morning digging worms from the garden, my dad packed the sandwiches and a flask of hot soup and me my brother and dad would jump in the car and head to the river bank. Sitting by the bank and having literally the time of our lives is a very strong memory in my head. I remember watching that bright yellow bubble float being snatched underwater and my heart was racing, being a child I had visions of Moby Dick on the end of the line and I was about to catch it. It felt like I was reeling in for a life time I kept going and going  I could feel the weight and strain and I was just staring at the water eager to see what exactly was going to emerge.  A little flash of silver and my eyes were wide open, as I pulled in the beast,  I was shouting and laughing and I brought up my first ever fish in my life….a half pound eel!!

 eeeel

That eel could have been a Salmon or a 5lb trout it would have made no difference I finally caught something and I was going to eat it…I was determined to eat this slimy slippery thing.  My dad didn’t understand why I wanted to eat this limp little eel but it was so important to me and that’s where my passion grew from that day.

 

We chopped of his head and gutted it, took it home and cooked it in a pan with butter and seasoned flour. It wasn’t gourmet cooking, the eel was boney but it was so rewarding nothing else mattered to me at that moment.

 

So it is fitting that for my first recipe I will hand over a very quick snack with cooking a nice sized 1lb eel

 

1lb eel skinned and cut to chunks.

 

Tbl spoon Flour.

 

Pinch Salt.

 

Pinch Pepper.

 

Half tsp Paprika.

 

pinch Chilli powder.

 

Tsp of brown sugar.

 

Good knob of butter and dash of vegetable oil.

 

First skin your eel and chop in to one inch chunks bone and all. Mix all of the ingredients in a bowl minus the butter and the oil. Place the choped eel in the mix and coat it well. Once the eel pieces are coated in the mix place the butter in a frying pan with a splash of vegetable oil on medium heat, once the butter and oil is at it temperature place your eel chunks in the pan and fry until golden brown, the spices will sear in to the meat and will caramelize to a nice golden colour. Once the cooking is done set aside.

 

Serve in a bowl  with a good wedge of lemon and tuck in! a simple recipe to start you off this week..enjoy !

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Cai ap Bryn

 

www.thewildfoodcateringcompany.co.uk

 

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