68 Naturally Made Dried Fish

    After a moment's thought, Chu Xian made the decision to transform back into a fish and eat all the carps he caught, using the net instead for the grenadier anchovies.

    Then, back in human form, he carried the net and three chests back to his car. The few people in the area glanced at the wooden chests curiously but didn't approach.

    Inside his car, he opened the boxes expectantly, starting with the longer, rectangular one.

    "Paper. What a pity!" Chu Xian thought, shaking his head speechlessly. The paper had long been soaked with water and turned into messy lumps.

    Putting that chest aside, he opened one of the square ones.

    "Cloth? Why is everything cloth or paper? Did this guy run a silk business or something?"

    Chu Xian thought to himself, shaking his head with disappointment before turning to the final box.

    "Yes! The best for last!" Chu Xian finally smiled.

    The beautiful, fish-shaped object was made of white jade with a red belly and two black eyes. The whole piece was two palms wide and was obviously a top-grade art piece.

    Chu Xian polished it and examined it in every direction affectionately before putting it on his dashboard. It would be a nice decoration.

    Although he didn't find any treasure in the wreck, he wasn't too disappointed--that would be too unrealistic, and even when it came to wrecks, the best ones were usually in the sea. Even the chances of coming across a wreck in the sea were too low.

    Finished with the boxes, he picked up the grenadier anchovies and smiled before willing in his heart, shrinking the 20cm anchovy quickly. Now it didn't look like an anchovy at all, but rather, it looked like a small unknown fish.

    The reformed anchovy was only seven to eight cm, but its entire body was very tough.

    "Hm, shrinking the meat entirely will kill them," Chu Xian thought, shaking his head with a frown.

    That's right--he was trying to shrink fish meat to make some naturally dried fish. The water was sucked out and the density increased; the entire fish looked hard and tough like it died a long time ago.

    "Let's see. Let's see if uncle can cook this and make it tasty!" Chu Xian dried all the grenadier anchovy this way, finishing off the fifty some anchovies he caught. After remolding, the total weight of the entire batch was only about 2.5kg.

    Back home, Chu Xian walked into the living room where his family was watching TV. He shouted with an air of surprise, "Mom, dad, I caught some weird fish, the kind I was talking about this afternoon!"

    "En? What? What did you tell your uncle?" Chu Xian's father asked, looking up with confusion.

    "Eh..." Chu Xian's mouth twitched; after his father got drunk and fell asleep, he forgot everything.

    "The naturally dried fish! Take a look!" Chu Xian said, taking out a fish and showing it to them.

    "Eh? This fish is so hard!" Chu Xian's father picked out a small fish and looked it over. He squeezed it, put it up to his nose and smelled it. "It doesn't smell like a fish that died a long time ago?"

    "This is the naturally dried fish I mentioned today. This kind of fish basically doesn't have any water in its meat and it's all in collected in its stomach!"

    "Why are they all dead?"

    "Mom, this kind of fish doesn't have water in its meat so it'll die as soon as it leaves the water, but it's still edible!"

    "Oh!" She answered, accepting his explanation. Chu Xian's father stood up and said, "Let's give them to your uncle for him to handle so we can try them tomorrow!"

    "Bro! Are you asleep? If you're awake, open the door!" Chu Xian's father yelled at Chu Ming's house next door, leaning out of his window.

    "Not yet! What is it? Come over!" Chu Ming's voice floated over.

    Chu Xian and his father went over and gave Chu Ming the fish.

    "This kind of fish really exists...? Tsk tsk, even after fishing for half my life, I've never seen this kind of small fish before. Xiao Xian where did you catch this? I want to go fishing tomorrow."

    "Eh, at the normal place!" Chu Xian replied nonchalantly.

    "Oh? I want to try tomorrow and see if I can catch some. I'm going to treat these fish right now and we can taste them tomorrow. I'm guessing they'll be very delicious!"

    Uncle Chu Ming had his own method to process the fish--he quickly and confidently scooped out all the waste in the fish's stomachs, steamed them in the pot and added in some spices before sealing them all in a plastic bag.

    The next day, Chu Xian drove to the city with his family and walked around the biggest shopping mall in the area. He bought all kinds of things, from furniture and electrical appliances to clothes and accessories.

    When they finally returned home late in the afternoon, everyone's faces were covered with smiles, and even Ziran held her toys excitedly, running around the house.

    When Chu Xian brought his gifts over to his uncle's place, the old couple praised Chu Xian happily.

    For dinner, Uncle Chu Ming cooked many dishes, including two different kinds of fish. Beef and lamb dishes also covered the table.

    "Come, try this special dried fish. I took no unnecessary steps, and with my recipe adding in the flavor, the freshness of the fish was completely conserved--try it!" Chu Ming said excitedly, taking out a bowl of dried fish.

    "Okay!" Chu Xian extended his chopsticks and took one.

    "Delicious, so delicious!"

    Just as Chu Xian took a bite, his uncle Chu Ming did the same. He thumped the table and shouted in excitement.

    "It really is incredible!" Chu Xian's eyes shined. The freshness, spiciness, and numbness filled his mouth, and the more he chewed, the tastier the dried fish became. It didn't have the toughness of normal dried fish, and the taste was all compressed in the fish meat. The dish was hands-down the best thing he'd ever eaten.

    "This dried fish is too delicious. You can't smell it, but after you take a bite, your whole mouth is filled with flavor."

    "Yes! Not bad at all! It's much better than the dried fish brother made in the past. You probably can't even get something this good in those fancy restaurants!"

    They spoke and ate non-stop. The fish tasted much better than the ones Chu Xian ate with Jin Sen and Jin Hua at that restaurant the other time.

    "The good taste of the fish is one factor, and uncle's recipe is another, but the most important factor should still be the natural compression that preserves the freshness of the fish. I wonder if other fish would still taste as good, like abalone or squid?"

    If they all tasted as good as the grenadier anchovies, this would definitely become a famous delicacy--very popular among foodies!

    Then, the future would be...
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