I don't know about you but I love eating ikan keli. Be it keli goreng, keli bakar, keli masak lemak cili padi, keli goreng berlada. I love them all. However, I have never ever cooked, let alone cleaned an ikan keli my whole entire life. That's why I would take a keli dish whenever I eat outside because it's the one fish that I never dealt with.
That was until a few days back. I was at Mercato supermarket trying to figure out what to buy for dinner that night. Then I saw some ikan keli and they're already cut into two, packed and chilled. Normally I see ikan keli still alive and jumping around or swimming away in tanks. I passed by the fish counter and went to the poultry section. I have a few pieces of chicken in the freezer so there's no need to buy chicken. Then I went back to the fish counter and i noticed that the Bangla guy was looking at me weird probably thinking as if I have never seen an ikan keli before because I was prodding and touching the package. I eventually took one pack and thought it would be nice to cook ikan keli goreng berlada. I also took a packet of cili giling and I'm set. I was in no mood to boil and blend dried chillies at home so cili giling is my saviour.
I got home and started working on the ikan keli and boy oh boy. Who would have thought that they are slippery as heck? I sat on the floor, put my cutting board and took my chopper and set to cut it. It was so slippery and looking at the fish gave me a weird feeling. It doesn't help that Babycakes kept on saying 'EEEEEE (insert some baby talk gibberish here)'. She said it so many times I kid you not. I kept telling her this is a fish. I didn't say it's a catfish or she'll get confused like, wait, is it a cat or a fish now LOL. She's not used to seeing a dead fish I guess so she probably couldn't recognize it. She's used to seeing the fishes in the aquarium at our condo lobby and also posters of fishes in the elevator at our condo.
As I worked on the ikan keli, I realized that it was not cleaned yet. So I had to clean out the gut and gills and what not and the feeling is just weird. I feel so geli handling the fish, I have no idea why. Other fishes, I am fine. I am so used to cleaning fishes but handling an ikan keli is a different thing altogether.
Too bad hubby doesn't eat ikan keli so I ended up eating it myself. I even had some leftover that I tapau them for lunch the next day, with white rice of course. I think I'll just stick to eating ikan keli at restaurants. I don't think I ever want to deal with a dead, uncooked ikan keli.