Today we have another guest post from one of our senior coaches, qualified chef Priscilla Burnett! We’re lucky enough to have Priscilla discuss some simple but delicious methods to incorporate healthy quantities of fish in your diet. Enjoy!
Growing up, Friday night was fish and chip night, which was the highlight of the week. One of us would be in charge of writing who was getting what, another to run around to the shop and collect the order. And the unfortunate others would be on setting the table.
Now when I talk fish and chips, I mean FISH and chips. None of this palm sized morsel that you pay the earth for. I’m talking proper fresh juicy fish. However I’m digressing.
I’ve had a clients of late ask me how to cook and how to choose fresh fish. Melbourne is fortunate to have a host of fresh food markets to choose from.
Ideally buy your fish between Tuesday and Saturday as the fishing traulers don’t go out over the weekend.
Try and choose Australian or New Zealand fish. This way you are guaranteed clean, fresh water and the ‘catch to table’ time is drastically reduced.
Build a repoure with your fish monger. They will be more likely to give you the best cuts of fish.
Fish shouldn’t smell like Fish! Look for plump, bright coloured flesh. It shouldn’t look dull or flat or have a slimly feel to it.
If buying whole fish, the gills should be bright colour, eyes bright and still protruding.
Often you can smell fish cooking from a mile away. To help with this try cooking in an oven bag. This greatly reduces cooking time and cleaning up. Adding vegetables to the bag gives you a meal all in one.
Remember to rotate your fish. Often you find one you like and just keep buying it. Again ask your fish monger to recommend different varieties to you.
Try adding fish to the recipe for cauliflower fritters available in our ebook – Lean Cooking Made Simple
Oven bake is a hassle free way also of preparing fish. Often marinating fish overnight or during the day helps create a different flavor. Whether it be an Asian theme ginger/coriander or Spanish flare with a salsa verde.
Try mixing salmon with white fish and making fish balls. This is a great way to use end cuts and use up left overs.
A nut crust is a nice textural difference to add. Add some seasame seeds and lemon juice, blend and genourously smother fish.
Poaching fish is not commonly done in the home but is very easy. You can just use a high sided tray and fill 2cm deep with either a fish stock or white wine/water mix. Add lemon juice, salt, pepper and herbs. Place fish on a piece of baking paper with butter smeared on the inside side (side to touch fish), submerge fish almost completely in liquid. Fish is done when white droplets appear on surface.
CORIANDER/LIME AND OLIVE OIL DRESSING
Heading into summer, this is a nice refreshing dressing to add to your seafood dish.
Handfull of coriander
Zest and juice of 1 lime
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon honey
½ cup olive oil
Shred coriander and place in bowl.
Add lime juice and zest.
Add salt, pepper and honey.
With a whisk, slowly add in olive oil making sure you are whisking the whole time.
The more oil you add, the thicker the dressing will be. So play around with oil amount for desired coating.
This has a lovely summer feel to it. It also keeps well in the fridge and can be used with chicken and pork.
- 2 red capsicums
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and pan fried
- ¼ cup roasted almonds
- 2 tomatoes, skinned, deseeded, coarsely chopped
- 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar (red wine vinegar can be substituted)
- ½ teaspoon smoked sweet paprika
- Preheat oven to 180 degree.
- Put the capsicums on a baking paper lined tray. Cook for 30 mins or until the capsicums have turned black and started to collapse. Set aside to cool, then remove skin and seeds.
- Put the garlic in a food processor and blitz.
- Add the almonds and blitz to a coarse crumb.
- Add the capsicum and tomatoes, the olive oil, sherry vinegar and smoked paprika.
- Season to taste and set aside.
- 2 cups nuts (salted if you like)
- 1/2 cup sesame seeds
- 1/2 cup shredded coconut
- Place ingredients into food processor and pulse to semi course consistency.
You can brush fish with melted coconut oil to help with cohesion of rub.
SALSA VERDE (ADAPTED)
- Large handful of parsley
- Handful of basil
- Handful of mint
- 2-3 roasted cloves garlic (quickly pan fried)
- Small handful of capers
- 1 tablespoon of dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
- 8 tablespoons of olive oil
- Juice of 1 small lemon
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Place all items except olive oil into food processor. While blending, drizzle in olive oil.
- Use as either a basting/sauce to cook seafood in or as a sauce to drizzle over once seafood is cooked.
You can play around with the consistency by how much olive oil you put in. The more you put in the thicker it will be.
Missing the satisfaction of spreading butter or margarine over your potatoes? Simply put a small container of olive oil in the fridge. It will harden and become like a soft butter! Also add garlic or herbs to create your own flavoured oil spread.