Chapter 42 – Fish with pickled cabbage
Li Man pointed at the grass carp that were swimming back and forth and said to Li Hua, “Grab one out. I’ll make fish with pickled cabbage for you guys.
(T/N: Below is a picture of fish with pickled cabbage.)
Even if she didn’t say the words, Li Hua knew that she wanted a fish. But, he really wasn’t very good at catching fish. He had to go ask his third brother for help. “Wait here, I’ll get third brother to come over.”
Seeing that Li Hua and Li Man were by the pit with fishes, Li Mo had already walked over. “Let me do it.”
Seeing that his oldest brother had come over with a bamboo stick, Li Hua automatically moved to the side. “Oldest brother.”
Li Mo stood near the edge of the pit and focused his gaze on the fish. Suddenly, he struck the bamboo stick down. When he raised the bamboo stick back up, there was a plump, grass carp pierced onto it.
Li Man felt as if she had just witnessed something from a martial arts drama. There really were people that could catch fish with just a stick! She immediately clapped her hands together and expressed her admiration. “Wow, so amazing. You’re so awesome!”
Faced with Li Man’s smiling eyes that were full of worship, Li Mo felt a bit self-conscious. After he handed the fish to Li Hua, he headed straight back to the peach tree. At the moment that he turned around, his lips had curved up without him noticing. His earlier depressed mood had faded away just from looking at her smiling face.
Still smiling, Li Man said, “Your oldest brother is so amazing.” As she took the fish from Li Hua, she said, “I’m going to gut the fish. Help me by getting some water from the well.
Li Man went to the well, and Li Hua returned to the kitchen first and brought back a knife and a bowl.
After Li Hua got a bucket full of water from the well, Li Man brought everything outside of their home, by the entrance. She was worried about getting the courtyard dirty.
Very quickly, the fish was gutted and cleaned, and Li Man happily returned to the kitchen. Fish with pickled cabbage was her specialty dish.
Little Five had obediently stayed sitting by the cooking fire to watch over it. Seeing Li Man coming inside with a fish, he was pleasantly surprised. “Older sister, are you going to cook fish for lunch?”
“En.” Li Man placed the fish on the chopping board, and sliced off flesh from both sides of the fish. In addition, she cleaved the fish head and cut the rest of the fish into uniformly, smaller pieces.
Watching her nimble and efficient technique, Li Hua and Little Five were blown away by her skill.
The pickled cabbage had already been sliced up, so she didn’t need to do anything else to it. One by one, Li Man prepared the other ingredients. She peeled and minced the garlic, washed and sliced the garlic, and grounded the chili peppers into a powder.
After all of the ingredients were prepared, she ordered to Little Five to start a fire for another pot. When the oil had reached medium heat, she dropped in the pieces of garlic, slices of garlic, and grounded chili pepper. The heated mixture quickly released puffs of delicious smells. After roughly stir-frying the pickled cabbage, she added water, the fish head, and the fish bones to the pot and brought the food back to a boil before letting it simmer for a bit.
After that, she added the sliced pieces of fish and salt into the pot that already had the other seasonings and mixed everything together. She let everything boil for a while, then she covered the pot and let the food continue to cook at a lower heat.
Li Hua sincerely praised, “It smells really good.”
Leaning against the cooking range, Little Five gluttonously looked at the food.
At this time, Li Shu had already smelled the delicious scent and ran into the kitchen. “What are we eating for lunch? Why does it smell so good?” He wanted to take off the lid to see what was inside, but Li Man stopped him.
“Wait a bit. It’s not ready to eat yet.”
Li Shu took his hand back and looked at Li Man with a splitting grin. Surrounded by wisps of steam, her soft, white face looked even more beautiful.
Faced with such abnormally bright eyes, Li Man felt a bit scared. She instinctively leaned towards the cooking range.
Seeing her action, Li Hua pulled Li Shu back and explained, “It’s fish with pickled cabbage.”
Li Man continued to lean against the cooking range. About fifteen minutes later, she decided that the fish should be finished cooking, so she took off the lid and picked up a large plate so that she could transfer the food onto a plate.
Li Hua was worried that she would get scalded by the hot steam and went forward to help her, but Li Man wouldn’t let him. She just said, “Tell your oldest brother to come back. Everyone has to wash his hands too. We’re going to be eating soon.”
Little Five ran outside and shouted, “Oldest brother, it’s time to eat. Lunch is fish with pickled cabbage. It smells really good.”
There was no need for Little Five to shout. Li Mo had already smelled the delicious scent. It only took one guess to know that their wife had cooked lunch.