Eat like a Fish

Week 6 – Dab

by Slow Food Cape Cod on June 20, 2017

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This weeks list: Striped Bass, Dab, Scup, Red Hake

This week presented an interesting debate in my mind in terms of eating with the ecosystem.  When I got my fish list this week my first thought was “oh awesome stripped bass”, followed closely by “oh wait its not in season yet”, which was followed up with “I hope I don’t find this in the store this week”.

This was the first week that there was a certain fish that I actually hoped I did not find in the store.  In the state of Massachusetts commercial stripped bass season does not open until June 26th, and as I found out from asking around, it is actually illegal for fish markets to have stripped bass on the counter in Mass before that date.

I did have the opportunity to score some scup from the local weir fishermen, but I literary and figuratively missed the boat on that opportunity.   My first stop after that looking for fish was my trusty Chatham Fish and Lobster, this week however I struck out.  My next stop was Cape Tip Seafood in Orleans, where I had been once before and purcased Dab.  I figured I had a good chance again to find Dab there.  The fishmonger remembered me and asked what odd product I was after this week.  She did have Dab again so I grabbed some.  She loved the concept of the project and said she has told many people about it.

This week when I took the Dab home I figured that I would utilize it an some of the local produce that I am getting in my CSA to make a completely local dinner.   Eating with the Ecosystem to the max.  I sauteed up: asparagus, swiss chard, bok choy, and garlic scapes.  I added the fish and put the greens on top to seal in the moisture as the fish cooked.  I added a side salad of local greens and some local beer and had myself a dinner created completely on Cape Cod.

Everything was fresh and local and tasted delicious.  Dab is such a delicate fish you don’t want to do to much to it or it will fall apart.  But it is definitely an easy white fish to work with and provides lots of opportunities for meals.   I can’t wait until next week.

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Week 5- Haddock

by Slow Food Cape Cod on June 20, 2017

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Week 5-  This weeks list: Haddock, Pollock, Steamers, and Peekytoe Crab.

I purchased haddock this week from Chatham Fish and Lobster again.  This seems to be my go to fish market for locally caught seafood.  This was the first week in many that I actually had an option as to which fish I wanted to purchase.  I knew that I could find locally caught steamers, but I was surprised to see locally caught haddock as well.

I picked haddock because of my familiarity with preparing it, and know that I can make a whole meal out of the haddock.  My only knowledge of preparing steamers is to just steam them and dip them in butter.   I purchased the haddock early in the week with the intention of cooking it that night.  All of a sudden life got in the way and 2 days (Wednesday) later I had not made my fresh haddock yet.  Worried about keeping the fish fresh I quickly googled how could I freeze the fish in case I didn’t get around to eating it until Sunday.  I was shocked, and pleasantly surprised that cold water fish freezes very well for short periods of time with very little preparation.  The article I was reading said that cold water fish freeze better than beef for chicken because they are already living in cold water and are cold blooded animals so freezing does not destroy the tissue or the texture like freezing other meats does.  This made total sense once I thought about it.

Four days later I pulled my haddock out of the freezer defrosted it and threw it on the grill 2 ways.  Half of the fish I just topped with butter and bread crumbs, and half of the fish I topped with a Korean BBQ sauce.  Both were delicious,  I find that I like my fish fairly plain instead of making very complicated recipes.  I like to see my fish and taste my fish instead of mixing it into a recipe.  Maybe if I were to have haddock again on my list I would try a more intricate dish, but the first time I try a fish from the list I just want to eat the fish.

I didn’t get any good pictures this week, so here is a picture of Captain Haddock

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On to week 6…..

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Week 4- Pollock

by Slow Food Cape Cod on June 5, 2017

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This weeks fish list: Spiny Dogfish, Dab, Pollock and Surf Clam

This was the first week that I had a repeat fish on my fish list, I had previously located Dab, and had been unable to locate Dogfish last week as it was not yet in season.  Again I made an assumption this week when I went to the market, I knew that Dogfish was not yet being landed, and thought that maybe I would be able to once again locate Dab.  I had not seen Pollock yet in the market, and although I know surf clams are being landed locally I had not seen them in the market yet.

I had a incredible busy week this week and wasn’t able to swing into my usually fish markets during the week so I started my search on Sunday afternoon.  My first stop was Cape Fish and Lobster in Hyannis, a fully stocked fish market featuring many locally caught products.  Unfortunately, they had nothing I was looking for, while explaining my search and that finding nothing was a success as well I got talking to the fishmongers. “No dogfish was not coming in yet, but would be soon, they did have gallon buckets of surf clam in the back for restaurants to make chowder, and they do have Dab that comes through the store, but usually goes right out to restaurants.”  He ran back to see if there was any Dab left, most had been shipped out, and what was left he didn’t think was good enough to sell me.

On to store number 2.  My second stop was Ring Brothers in Dennis, they have a counter run by Chatham Fish and Lobster with-in the store. No dogfish- No Surf Clam- No Dab, but YES Pollock labeled Locally Caught.  Asking about it the fish monger thought it was landed in Chatham.   Again we got to talking “whats the project? oh how cool? what are you supposed to do?”.  I have been shocked to always find fishmongers who have been interested and want to talk about the product, that makes me happy.

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*Not my picture*

As we got talking he mentioned that he doesn’t understand why people still come in looking to by Cod for things like tacos when there is delicious locally caught Pollock available.   Tacos—- well that is what got stuck in my mind.  At this point it was Sunday evening and I wanted to make something quick and easy for dinner, tacos sounded like a great idea.

I easily cut the Pollock into nice taco sized pieces, dreaded them in a cornmeal and fried them in a little bit of oil.

   

Fried up added to a taco with a little homemade Salsa Verde and lettuce was a perfect easy dinner.  The fish was meaty, flaky and delicious.  I wouldn’t hesitate to purchase this fish again and am excited to try cooking in a different way if provided the opportunity.

 

Onward to week 5…..

 

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Week 3- Bluefish

by Slow Food Cape Cod on May 25, 2017

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As with last week I made an assumption when I received my fish list this week:  Spiny Dogfish, Bonito, Bluefish and White Hake. As I mentioned last week the Cape Cod Fisherman’s Alliance is making a big push in a program called Pier to Plate to highlight “Under-Loved” species, Skate and Dogfish, and to bring them to the markets on the Outer Cape.  As a result I had assumed that I would easily find Dogfish this week.

However, that was not the case.  When I entered Chatham Fish and Lobster this week the fishmonger immediately recognized me as the person who was looking for crab last week and let me know that he had more crab this week.  I let him know this week I was looking for Spiny Dogfish, Bonito, Bluefish or White Hake.  Dogfish wasn’t being landed yet, not until mid-June, but they would be doing a tasting event in June for both Skate and Dogfish (I guess my fish list was just a few weeks too early).

Chatham Fish and Lobster did have locally Chatham Landed Bluefish…….. I was not totally thrilled about the the prospect of Bluefish and I was under the impression that it always has the real fishy oily flavor that I personally am not always a fan of.  As I spoke to the fishmonger I could tell he knew I was not thrilled about bluefish, so suggested that I grab the Lemon Caper marinade that they sold “dredge it in marinade, let it sit for and hour and back it in a Pyrex”.

Once I arrived home I placed the fish into a Pyrex, put  the lemon caper dressing on it and let it sit.  I baked the fish at 350F until it was flaky and took a taste—- No fish taste to be found!!!!

I put the fish over a bed of rice with some fresh from the garden asparagus.  I enjoyed it a lot more than I expected.

I can’t wait to see what week 4 has in stock for me.

 

#slowfish #eatlikeafish #eatingwiththeecosystem #slowfood

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Week 2- Jonah Crab

by Slow Food Cape Cod on May 22, 2017

When I received my fish list this week: Skate, Jonah Crab, Sea Robin, and Bonito, I had assumed that I would be eating Skate for the week. I knew Bonito was out of season and didn’t think I would find Sea Robin in the market. I also had never seen Jonah crab in the market. I know Skate is landed in Chatham so I assumed I would find it.

I visited Chatham Fish and Lobster this week: When I asked about Skate the fishmonger said that this was too early in the season for Skate, as I was about to leave figuring that I wouldn’t find the other fish, another lady in line asked the fishmonger about the 4 different kinds of crab cakes they had on display in the counter. The fishmonger stated that the first crab cake was Jonah Crab landed in Maine, then he went on to describe the other 3, but I stopped listening. After verifying with him that in fact it was Jonah Crab from Maine, I purchased a crab cake to bring home. I’m not normally a crab cake person, so 1 was plenty for me. I was instructed 350 for 10-15 min and that it was just basically crab and breadcrumbs. I figured this would be very easy. After I heated the crab cake up I was pleasantly surprised to enjoy a very meaty delicious crab cake with crispy breadcrumbs. I would defiantly try crab again.

I feel a little bit like I cheated this week as the crab cake was pre-made and I just had to cook it.  But I had a very very busy week this past week and am not sure that I would have had time to cook a meal, so a pre-made crab cake was perfect.

 

#slowfish #eatlikeafish #eatingwiththeecosystem #slowfood

 

As two side notes this week:

  1. I watched the Nantucket Sound Weir Fishermen come in last Friday and they had caught a Sea Robin, too small to eat, but they are around.
  2. The Cape Cod Commercial Fishermans Alliance is kicking off their summer Pier to Plate program where they are highlighting “under-loved” species that are being caught locally.  They are focusing on Skate and Dogfish and have 20 fish markets and restaurants on board to highlight these fish this summer. pier to plate

 

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