Cooking fish is straightforward, if you just keep to a few basic rules you will be serving up dishes to vie with the best of restaurants.
It is suggested that we eat at least three or more servings of fish a week, since the experts have proved that if you eat more fish you are less likely to suffer from heart disease and cancer.
The fat in fish is called omega-3, an essential fatty acid which keeps our blood from getting sticky and so reduces the probability of having a stroke.
Maureen and I well, we just like fish and seafood for its versatility, ease of cooking, taste and if it’s good for us well, that’s a bonus!
Fish and seafood is available to buy fresh, frozen, or cured, you can buy it whole, filleted or cut into steaks, your fishmonger or supermarket fish counter should stock a large choice of each of the groups of seafood there are 3 main groups of fish;
White Sea Fish
Including Cod, Haddock, Plaice, Whiting, Pollack, Pout (Pouting. Bib), Saithe (Coley), Hake, Monkfish, Dover Sole, Lemon Sole, Megrim, Witch, Brill, Turbot, Halibut, Dogfish, Skates, Rays, John Dory, Bass, Ling, Catfish, and Redfish
- White fish are divided into two types round and flat.
- Large round white fish such as Cod and Coley are usually sold in steaks, fillets, or cutlets.
- The small round species such as Whiting and Haddock are usually sold in fillets.
- With flat fish, the larger species such as Halibut and Turbot are sold whole in fillets and as steaks
- Smaller flat fish like Plaice and Sole are usually sold whole, trimmed, or filleted.
Including Herring, Mackerel, Pilchard, Sprat, Horse Mackerel, Whitebait, Tuna.
- Oil-rich fish such as Herring and Mackerel are rich in omega 3 fatty acids, which have been shown to have a lowering effect on blood fats; this decreases the chance of blood vessels clogging up with cholesterol.
- Oil-rich fish is also a good source of vitamins A and D.
Fresh Water Fish
Including Salmon, Trout, Perch, Bass, Bream, Pike, Arctic Char
Then there are the;
Shellfish (Molluscs and Crustaceans)
Including Clams, Cockles, Whelks, Periwinkles, Mussel, Oyster, Lobster, Crab, prawns, Crayfish, Scallops, Sea Urchins, Shrimp, Squid, Octopus, Cuttlefish.
You know that you can always ask for help when choosing your fish and shellfish especially if you are not sure how it should be prepared and cooked.
Your fishmonger should be happy to prepare fresh fish for you in exactly the way you want, if what you want is not available, species of the same type can always be substituted and once again a good fishmonger can help you out.
We should be eating at least two servings of fish a week including one of oily fish. Fish and shellfish are excellent sources of a range of vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids, furthermore oily fish is especially loaded in omega 3 fatty acids.
However if we would like to make sure there are sufficient fish to eat now, and in the future, we must start thinking about the choices we make when we decide which fish we eat and your local fishmonger can also help with that, a good fishmonger will always know where the product he sells comes from and all the fishmongers, fishermen and chefs I know put sustainability at the top of there to-do list.
Anyway, enough of all that lets get to the main point of what we hope will be a weekly or fortnightly part of our blog;
Our Catch of the Day is; Sea Trout
The wild sea trout, or salmon trout, isn’t at all like the low-cost and nondescript farmed trout which is sold in supermarkets and markets country wide.
It is available all year round as a farmed fish, but the best months for wild sea trout are March, April, May, June, and the first part of July.
It is a wild fish with pink, tender flesh, more akin to salmon than trout and is wonderful when served with lemon.
The time it spends at sea simply implies that it is more like wild salmon in its colouring, taste and texture while it doesn’t have the extreme prices of wild salmon.
Sea trout are so called because they swim down from their home rivers to the sea to feed and fatten up before returning to the fresh water of the home river to spawn. The end result is a wonderful fish that can be cooked as salmon, either poached in wine with herbs, baked in foil, baked, or pan-fried in butter with capers and served with new potatoes, I like mine with a little anchovy butter and lemon.
If they can be likened to any fish it would the group of fish that includes the brown trout; it is a silvery grey with black or red spots and its pink flesh comes from its diet of shrimps and other crustaceans.
Sea trout is also a good source of omega-3, which is linked with the reduced risk of heart disease and some cancers.
Buying Sea Trout
You can by Wild Sea Trout at some supermarket fish counters although it is more easily to be had from fishmongers and fresh fish market stalls.
A quantity of the most superb sea trout in the UK are to be found in Wales where they are known as sewin
Jon our fishmonger always has it when in season and prides himself on obtaining only the best.
Remember as with all fresh fish, they should be bright-eyed, red-gilled with a refreshing sea tang and a golden bronze sheen to the skin is as a rule a good sign.
Storing Sea Trout
If doable buy your sea trout on the day you plan to cook it, when you get it home unwrap it, and rinse under cold water, pat dry with paper towel and place in an airtight container.
Keep it in the coldest part of the refrigerator for best flavour, texture, and nutritional value, keep fresh seafood no longer than two days before use.
For best quality, it’s best to use fresh seafood in its freshest condition
If it’s you find it necessary to freeze fish, freeze it rapidly and use it as soon as possible.
Preparing and Cooking Sea Trout
It’s not easy to make a terrible dish using good sea trout, ask your fishmonger to gut, clean, and / or fillet your sea trout.
Sea trout can be used as an alternative in any trout or salmon recipe.
My Favourite Recipe for Sea Trout
This recipe for Trout with crayfish and watercress sauce is from the Hairy Bikers I think it is just about the best recipe for this wonderful fish
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