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A fishy story on May 14th

ECUADOR | Wednesday, 22 May 2013 | Views [567]

Monster cat - fish dinner at Playa Escondido

Monster cat - fish dinner at Playa Escondido

So, the couple invited us to have dinner with a fresh catch of a big fish and when they arrived at the camp site that fish WAS BIG. It was an adult cat fish. I don't know much about fish, so I hope this description leads you to understand the size of our dinner.

As it turned out neither one of us knew anything even remotely about how to turn this creature into something edible - especially without a kitchen and any of the kitchen utensils. At this juncture this monster fish looked even bigger ...it was getting dark and we had build a fire, a big fire at the beach and the plan was to cut some onion,  tomatoes, garlic and stuff it (it was gutted by the fishermen I understood..), squeeze orange and lime juice on it and  wrap it in  plenty of fresh banana leaves so we can throw  it whole and stuffed in the fire and let it cook that way. All four of us were highly suspicious about the last part, but nobody could come up with a better idea and it had started raining and we were hungry. We had no string to secure the leaves, but who cares....it'll work ...somehow. I was actually - to be perfectly honest- a bit cranky, because I was hungry and in my mind I saw no dinner in the near future and at that point I didn't even think it was funny!
The prep work was done in a team effort and looked almost like we knew what we were doing...the last part though, was, as I expected .....all four of us had a hold of the - now even bigger, since it was stuffed - fish and tried not to swing it, but gently guide it into the hot coals and flames...and then we stood back and watched......soon the banana leaves were on fire and we knew the whole thing would go up in flames, so some serious action was required...one of us had dug through some old fire place - desperate to find something useful and found a piece of wire fence to use as a possible grill. Now to hoist the monster back out of the fire onto the metal was the hardest part and in the process we lost all the stuffing in the flames,  but no fingers and hands and the fish was still semi intact.  I was still highly suspicious I would get anything to eat and snuck back to the safety of our tent in the dark and munched on some candy I had still stored away...feeling a bit unsocial. The scene around the fire place seemed to have calmed down and the cat-fish was cooking away without the stuffing supported by wire fencing and some left over banana leaves. I eyed it from the distance and felt some hope rising. 
Well, end of story: We ate the big fish all up and it tasted most delicious! Fully stuffed ourselves.  Thank you Ayesha and Kike. One of the most memorable dinners I ever had.        

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