Holy Mackerel, Batman, there is something fishy about this! And indeed there is.

The last fresh mackerel seen in the Coachella Valley probably had Alzheimer’s and got into the All-American Canal in a confused stupor from the Gulf of Mexico. While I love Daniel Boulud and his food, this week’s recipe for Boston Mackerel au Vin Blanc from the Café Boulud Cookbook proved too challenging and indifferent. When I announced the recipe to Sous Chef, he immediately responded, “Why are the French so fascinated with bait fish”?, thereby signifying his lack of enthusiasm for the dish.

Weekend in a French Kitchen

The essential culinary emergency kit – wine, burger, fries

With the nearest fresh mackerel at least 130 miles away, and the available canned variety not being suitable for the task, I consoled myself that I could salvage a modicum of pleasure with a chilled bottle of Coteaux du Languedoc, the white wine suggested by Daniel for the recipe. Alas I was deprived of even that small indulgence as there was no white wine from Languedoc to be found in my part of the desert. Just another example of the vicissitudes of being a Francophile in a very provincial tourist region.

Depressed, bothered, and bewildered, the Culinary Diva simply made the best of most trying circumstances. Here is the proof:

The Boulud Punt

When all else fails you can’t go wrong with a Chateau Haut Brion 1982, Habit Burger and Fries