On this day in 1897 Victor Mills was born.  He was a chemical engineer who worked for Proctor & Gamble.  He improved Duncan Hines cake mixes, improved Jif peanut butter, and invented Pampers disposable diapers. (sourced from  From the improvements he chose to make, we can conclude that Mister Mills had a lazy wife and was thus compelled to work on things which would make life easier for both himself and his children. Looking back on my own life, I am most grateful for the Pampers. Thankfully, my days of needing them are over and my baby has grown up to the extent that her social agenda is busier than mine.

She was away at a sleepover with her best friend yesterday, which was a good thing; she was not afforded the opportunity of berating us for barbarity. Her current moral attitude to food involves not eating anything ‘that once had a face’. Our nice, fat yellowtail would – most certainly – have qualified.

In fact, as the fish lay staring at me from my kitchen counter, I too had severe misgivings; I lifted my knife several times to begin the process of beheading and gutting the poor fellow. This is a man’s job, I said to my husband and he; flattered and pleased at the opportunity to flaunt his Camel Man talents, did the job with no more than a flick of the wrist.


Stuffed with chopped tomato, onion, yellow peppers and pesto and wrapped in a tin foil blanket, the fish went into the oven to bake. We have ample left over, a kedgeree is on the cards for supper tonight.

Won’t resemble anything that ever had a face. Not remotely.

Ah, we mothers, what tricks we have up our sleeves.


60 Comments Add yours

  1. i have to agree with her, i can’t face a face on my plate, unless it’s a smiley consructed from non-face things

    1. theonlycin says:

      She wants to faint when we eat whole prawns 😉

  2. souldipper says:

    Best I don’t say too much, Cin…I lean in the Bunn’s direction.

    1. theonlycin says:

      No worries, I’ll try not to post face-foods too often 😉

  3. Tandy says:

    I love yellow tail! We had fresh elf on Friday – Dave did the Camel Man thing and I am going to make fish stock 🙂 Have a great day xxx

    1. theonlycin says:

      I have the head frozen, was afraid of maggots in the bin as the only collect garbage on Fridays. Maybe I’ll do a stock too.

  4. Had to giggle reading this – we have family and friends who too don’t eat anything that has a face – oh dear!
    Glad to know I can add Camel Man talents to my CV.
    🙂 Mandy

  5. Tilly Bud says:

    Definitely a man’s job.

  6. Supa says:

    Oh yes, cleaning fish is definately a ‘blue’ job.

    1. theonlycin says:

      And a bucket comes in handy …

  7. Leon says:

    Nice pic of the yellowtail!

  8. I love the story behind the fish face! 😉
    I’m a vegetarian who only eats fish… luckily, as I’m married to an AVID fly fisherman!

    Love your recipe, Cindy… will pass on to my Camel Man to try out at our next braai!


    1. theonlycin says:

      Simple recipes are usually best, thanks for the visit Candice 🙂

  9. victor was probably like the rest of us who work hardest on helping others in areas we need service in the most.

    1. theonlycin says:

      You’re probably right, Doc 🙂

  10. bandsmoke says:

    Drool delish at such gorgeous fare and a double thumbs up for saignant 🙂 Not squeamish with face fodder but it’s the “aroma” while filleting fish that make my toes curl ;-(

    1. theonlycin says:

      Yes, it does invoke a bit of a small vomint 😉

  11. I can’t handle food that looks at me.

    1. theonlycin says:

      I averted my eyes from its baleful gaze 😉

  12. Colleen says:

    Hehe, lovely story Cindy. I hope you post the second part….the kedgeree….as well! I also am not able to deal with faces. Camel men always to the rescue! I am convinced that, stuffed with those ingredients, this must have been the most sublime meal. xx

    1. theonlycin says:

      Camel Man asked for potato wedges to go with the fish, it was very good 🙂

  13. Pseu says:

    None of us has qualms about food with faces, so fish is often on the menu. But I usually get the fishmonger to do the deed 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      When we’re in Cape Town, we buy directly from the boats and the fishermen do it for us. No idea why our fishmonger her in Johannesburg doesn’t do it; can only think that there is a large Jewish community and – with Pesach coming up – they may need the head and bits for gefilte fish. I must remember to ask.

  14. Pseu says:

    I have only ever made kedgeree with smoked fish. Would be interested in your recipe.

    1. theonlycin says:

      I’ll share it once I’ve made it, Pseu, will probably turn out more of a stir fry than a kedgeree.

  15. Misspeyton says:

    oooo yummmeeeee! This my favourite! I used to have a problem with it BUT im over that fear now *evil laughter* The photo of the fish is awesome!!! looking forward to the kedgeree recipe 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      LOL … can picture you with cleaver in hand 😉

  16. That looks and sounds divine. I would never be brave enough to try and gut a fish though. Xx

    1. theonlycin says:

      No, too ‘grillerig’ for me *shudder*

  17. adeeyoyo says:

    N.B. If I’m not too late, it’s hit me –

    Pesto Princess – price-less!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Not too late, winner selection will be done sometime tomorrow or Wednesday.

  18. adeeyoyo says:

    Very interesting post, Cin. Maybe the guy loved his wife sooo much he wanted to make her life easier…

    At the risk of giving away my age, we still used towelling nappies when I had my chidren – ugh!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Adee, I had all good intentions of doing the ‘earth friendly’ thing and using towelling nappies, lasted all of a day ;p

      1. adeeyoyo says:


  19. I’ve cleaned many a fish, and I agree with you that it’s a man’s job. How nice that your man stepped up. I bet the stuffed fish was delicious. Blessings to you, Cindy…

    1. theonlycin says:

      Back at you, Carol, I hope you have a really great week.

  20. slpmartin says:

    I have a daughter who share you daughter’s feelings.:-)

    1. theonlycin says:

      It’s quite a high-maintenance job feeding her ;p

  21. suzicate says:

    I don’t like eyes of the food I am eating staring up at me!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Yes, a blindfold comes in handy at times 🙂

  22. nrhatch says:

    I have never gutted a fish . . . and never will. It’s not on my “Bucket List.” 😎

    1. theonlycin says:

      The frozen fillet option is much easier 🙂

  23. gospelwriter says:

    I do love a nice fish dinner, but doubt I would eat it (or anything) if I had to first chop off the “face”… or even see it being done. I’m not familiar with yellowtail – are they common there?

  24. Jamie Dedes says:

    Delicious! Dort missed a good meal, eh?

    I remember when Pampers first came out. P & G thought they’d sell themselves, but the diapers sat on store shelves and went no where. I was sceptical and continued to cloth diapers until diapers were virtually no longer necessary. Found then that they made great dusters!

    Blog on …

    1. theonlycin says:

      I buy terrycloth diapers and have a friend crochet pretty borders on the edges and use them as hand towels 🙂

      1. Jamie Dedes says:

        Wonderful idea! Thanks.

  25. What a fabulous photograph of that beautiful yellowtail, Cin! It looks good enough to eat, ha ha!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thank you, Jane-Anne, great to have you visit my blog 🙂

  26. Lovely post Cindy. No face, eh? I have a feeling I have all this to come….

    1. theonlycin says:

      Brace yourself, Kate, as a friend of mine says, Teenagers are the reason why some animals eat their young at birth …

  27. bluebee says:

    Very funny, Cin – thank goodness for lazy ol’ Mrs Mills then, eh? 😉 My darling niece who is vegan (except for the odd late-night Big Mac munchie) has also been trying to encourage me to not eat anything “that once had a mother or a face” but I’m failing horribly on this front. (PS those photos are coming along very nicely 😀 )

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thanks bluebee.
      My feeling is that I didn’t claw my way to the top of the food chain to eat garnish …

  28. Artswebshow says:

    That poor tuna. lol
    The one job i hate more than anything in the kitchen is killing (murdering) lobsters.
    The fact that they are ugly makes it easier than it should be

    1. theonlycin says:

      Eeeeek … I have read that freezing them is the kindest way?

  29. I’m a chef & yet still never saw beauty in seeing a face on my plate…., I know its silly, but get rid of that face & I’m ready to tuck in….. just don’t show me their faces 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      And prawns, Chef? With those little eyes on stalks?

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