The fishy problem with Sullivan’s Chef

Both Arthur Sullivan and William Gilbert enjoyed being wealthy and living well but Gilbert thought Sullivan profligate for employing a French chef. ‘My cook gets £80 and gives me a kipper’, scoffed Gilbert. ‘Sullivan’s cook gets £500 a year for giving him the same thing in French!’

Kippers were enjoyed by Victorians and Edwardians not only for breakfast but as a treat for high tea or supper.

Did Sullivan’s cook make him jugged kippers though? And what, pray, is a jugged kipper anyway?

Answers below.


Jugged Kippers

Yes. The chef produced jugged kippers and this is how you can do it too;

For a traditional cooking method which is quick and simple and delivers a really moist and succulent fish try our recipe for jugged kippers.

Take as many kippers as you like, cold smoked for preference. Cut off their heads and tails using kitchen scissors and place the kippers vertically into a tall warmed jug.

Cover the fish with boiling water, cover the jug and leave it in a warm place for 6 minutes.

Remove the kippers, pat them dry with kitchen towel and serve.

They are delicious with a knob of butter, a thick chunk of crusty brown bread and maybe a wedge of fresh lemon. You can try adding poached or creamy scrambled eggs for an extra treat.