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Friday, May 25, 2012


Spanish Mackeral
Photo by:  capt.markwgore
(stallion), L. Scomber scombrus, Eng. Atlantic mackerel. This is an edible fish with a greenish-blue striped back, and silvery belly, 12-18 inches long. It spawns in three areas. The first is around Portugal and Spain in the Atlantic and the Bay of Biscay and the Mediterranean; the second off Western England and eastern Ireland and the third in the Norwegian Sea where it is called Northeastern Atlantic mackerel. In Galicia, it is the third largest catch after the sardine and the anchovy. It is preserved salted or semi-preserved in salt, smoked, dried or cooked in vinegar-acidified brine and packed with spices. It was common among in Al-Andulus recipes. In England, it was banquet food during Lent. At the same time, it was English medieval fast food sold ready to eat in the Cheap. Nola provides an elegant recipe for chub mackerel stuffed with spices, herbs and nuts and ground nuts and raisins sprinkled around the casserole, see estornino. Mackerel was an ingredient for alec (blog published August 3, 2011) and murri (see almori, blog published August 26, 2011). [Benavides-Barajas. Nueva-Clássica. 1995:182; and Nola. 1989:lxiiii-4]

For 4 persons


Baked mackerel with beetroot salad
Photo by: Sameen
1-2 mackerel per person depending on size 
¼ c virgin olive oil
2 onions thinly sliced
2 turnips sliced 1/8” thick
4 carrots sliced
1 c white wine
1 c fish broth
allioli [1]
¼ c breadcrumbs
Salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste

slices of lemon


Clean the mackerel, remove the guts and heads and wash the fish.

Gently fry the onions in olive oil. When translucent add the wine. Add turnips, carrots and fish broth. Season with salt and pepper. Gently boil uncovered to reduce sauce and until the vegetables are tender.


Place each mackerel in foil. Spread allioli on them and sprinkle them with breadcrumbs. Shut the foil and but them in a roasting pan. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes. Serve with vegetables and garnish with slices of lemon and capers.

[1] See blog published August 4, 2011.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this recipe, Susan! I've just returned from London, where I have enjoyed a delicate and tasty smoked mackerel and smoked mackerel paté. Although mackerel is very frequent and cheap in Spain, the smoked specialities are exclusive to the North of Europe. In Spain you can find it fresh in the market, and canned in oil. This small sister of tuna is not very apreciated, and I think it is because there are not so many recipes. I like the idea of the "papillote" and I'll try it the next time. I have made it on the pan, with a sauce of onions, tomato, garlic and red pepper, and in the oven, covered with a thread of oil and mustard (very tasty!). They should be exquisite (I imagine because I have never seen them prepared this way) simply on the barbecue or in "espetos" or wooden sticks over the brazes, as in the Andalusian beaches. Let somebody try and let us know!