Friday, 30 October 2009

Fish by the Lake

As we only had orders to keep us busy for a couple of days last week. We decided to make the most of the free time. So we made a few trips around la zona to see this part of Antioquia. It’s amazing really, just by taking a side road you see a whole different landscape.
It was a glorious few days. The scenery in this part of Colombia is truly beautiful. Smaller and smaller country lanes took us deep into the countryside. Field upon field growing all manner of vegetables. Cows relaxing in the fields munching on the grass. Chickens pecking at the side of the road, and dogs sleeping in the middle of the road.
On one of these days we ventured to El Peñol and Guatape. The later is on the shore of a large lake. The small town gets jammed packed on the weekends with day tippers from Medellin. The town is famed for its watersports and its fish, either to eat or to fish.
On our hot sunny Wednesday, it was a little relaxed, but still quite a few people had ventured out there, like us to see the place with a more tranquil feel to it. These small towns that play host to the stressed city folk at weekends change personality over night. Monday to Thursday they are small, nothing happening towns. Come Friday night they are thronging with hordes of party revellers. Everything happens on the weekend. But it is nice to see the otherside of these pueblos.
As I said Guatape is famed for its fish, cheap fish at that, and there are many restaurants that line the shorefront. All have the same menu and prices (more or less). All feature heavily on trout and bagre. (Cat fish). But as we are still in Antioquia, grilled meats and frijoles have to feature on every menu. There is no escaping it.
After a more or less pleasant stroll through the village center, and trying to avoid the restaurant and boat touts. I’m not really into those short trips on lakes for 30 minutes anyhows. And doing it alone would have been really dull. The view from the shore was just as good.
As it was around lunchtime and my belly was telling me to eat. We stopped in one place called “Vaso e’ Leche”, just for the name really.
I went for the catfish, which came floured and fried. More than likely deep fried, as everything is here. Lina had the trout apanado, which is supposed to be like milanesa, but it was deepfried also. Ohh we are in grease heaven.
Deepfrying food is a non cooks way of cooking. It’s a lazy way out. Also so is over grilling meat. We were in a small place a few weeks ago, and the meat was so tough a filling came out. It was tougher than old boots. A phrase to which my dentist, did not understand or find funny.
The catfish actually had a nice flavour even though it was swimming in grease. If I can find some here I will def buy some. But I think a quick grilling will do it justice.
On the route back we saw lots of handmade stalls set up to sell freshly caught fish to those weekend trippers. The few we saw that had fish for sale looked quite fresh, but in this heat, they must spoil quite quickly.
Next time we go, bring the cool box.

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