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The domestic: Sophie White's summery fish tacos

Himself is terrible at multitasking, except, as Sophie White recently realised, when it comes to tallying whose turn it is to complete chores


Fish tacos

Fish tacos

Fish tacos

Multitaskers and non-multitaskers view the world in completely different ways. As a working mother of two young children and a newborn, my every activity is catalogued according to the things that can be achieved simultaneously.

I brush my teeth in the shower. I time my own meals to coincide with the baby's feed, so that even though I'm 'wasting time' sitting down, I'm still ticking two boxes. I even get in a phone call to get the maximum bang for my time-buck. Sidenote: I have divided my friends according to who can tolerate the eating sounds and who cannot. The latter I call while doing the dishes.

I usually do the dishes when trying to get the baby to sleep in the sling. The sound of the running water, coupled with my rhythmic jigging and melodic bitching on the phone to pals sends him off nicely. When the nap is underway, I switch activities. The baby won't allow me sit down, so instead I sway at the standing desk in my office and use the time to write. After the nap, I'll feed and eat again, and then, when the baby is having a 'play' - he's three months so his play consists of crying and staring - I'll stick a podcast in and perhaps lash a Hoover around the house.

Podcasts are a multitasker's dream. I gave Himself a recommendation recently in the hopes that while listening to one, he might find cleaning more enjoyable and do more of it. My plan massively backfired when, in order to focus on the podcast, he had to go to a dark, silent room to take it in.

My most ambitious multitask to date was probably the time I brought my kids to the park and squeezed in a kettlebell workout, while also listening to a podcast in one ear as research for an interview. As a brain-and-body workout it was excellent, however, in an unfortunate turn of events that was probably predictable, my three-year-old did stray into the path of the kettlebell at one point.

Anyway, I think I've illustrated my point. Mothers take multitasking to incredible levels. Himself, meanwhile, refuses to so much as stir a pot while minding the children. And there is probably a case for such focus. When they look back on their childhood they'll have a clear image of him engaging 100pc, while I'll be coming at them with a kettlebell and one ear pod in.

The one area in which Himself can do more than one thing at a time is managing the marital leaderboard of who's doing what. You know the leaderboard, right? It's the place in our heads where each spouse's domestic efforts are tallied so that one can throw the other's laziness in their stupid, lazy faces. Himself is really good at juggling this bit of spousal admin. Recently, he alerted me to my laundry-dodging, which is how I came to make these tacos, in a loving act of quid pro quo.

Summery Fish Tacos

Serves 2

You will need:

1 teaspoon cumin

1 tablespoon paprika

1 tablespoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon onion salt

2 cod fillets

1 red chilli, finely diced

½ red onion, finely diced

2 tomatoes finely diced

Juice of 1 lime

10g fresh coriander, chopped

1 avocado

1 clove garlic, crushed

4 mini tortillas

½ tin black beans, drained

4 tablespoons sour cream


1 Preheat the oven to 200°C, 400°F, Gas 6. In a bowl, combine the cumin, the paprika, the dried thyme, the cayenne pepper and the onion salt, then coat the cod fillets with this mix. Place in the oven on a lined oven tray and bake for 12-15 minutes. To make the salsa, put the chilli, red onion and tomatoes in a bowl with the lime juice and stir in the fresh coriander.

2 Mash the avocado with the garlic. Toast the tortillas and spread each with some avocado and top with the cod, tomato salsa, the black beans and sour cream.

Sunday Indo Life Magazine