Getting fresh fish in the summertime or really any time of year is a great thing, but finding really fresh fish can always be something of a challenge. I know the supermarkets in my area primarily have a very small selection of prepackaged, frozen fish. If I drive about 20 miles I can go to markets that have regular fish counters, but they do not always have the greatest selection to choose from. That is why I was so happy to learn that there is a real fish market right near my house now, Hudson Valley Seafood, that offers some fantastic fresh fish. They had been wholesalers in the area for many years, supplying restaurants in the region with their fish and have just recently opened a retail store. They get fresh fish daily so there is always something new to see. The store is great, with that fresh fish and not fishy smell that you like to see in a market and the prices are very reasonable. When we ventured over their for the first time a couple of weeks ago, they had some great selections, including John Dory fish and some truly immense colossal Tiger prawns. We decided to try a little of each, using a recipe from Food Network for the John Dory while using a quick recipe from Bait to Plate for the prawns.
John Dory with Artichokes and Peppers
Olive oil, to saute
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/2 onion, small diced
1/2 carrot, small diced
4 artichoke hearts, diced
3 (3-pound) whole John Dory fish, scaled, eviscerated, and filleted with the skin on
2 ounces white wine
3 ounces chicken stock
1 pepper of your choice, minced
1 teaspoon ground coriander seed
1/2 lemon, juiced
Saute the garlic, onion, carrot, pepper, and artichoke hearts in the olive oil in a saute pan set of medium heat until the vegetables just begin to brown and soften, about 5 minutes. Deglaze the pan with white wine and chicken stock. Simmer the mixture for about 30 minutes, until the vegetables are fork tender.
After cooking the vegetables , puree about half of the mixture in the blender. Add the pureed half back to the mixture and stir to combine.
Season the fish fillets with salt and coriander. Heat the olive oil in a nonstick saute pan set over medium heat. Carefully place the fish fillets in the pan, flesh side down, and cook the fish until it is lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Turn the fillets over and cook until the skin is crispy and the fish is cooked through and no longer translucent, about another 2 minutes. Remove the fillets from the pan and set them aside. Deglaze the pan with lemon juice. Add the lemon juice to the artichoke mixture and stir well. Serve the fish with the artichoke mixture on the side.
Pan Roasted Tiger Prawns
2-3 U-3 Colossal Tiger Prawns
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Lemon, for serving
To clean the tiger prawns, remove the head of the prawns (be careful, they have a very sharp horn on the front), but leave the chest plate and legs on the shell in tact. Split the pawns down the back with a sharp knife and thoroughly clean out the intestines (think of it as deveining a shrimp, just on a much larger scale). Rinse the prawns thoroughly and place them in a large bowl. In a small bowl, mix together the olive oil, garlic, chili powder and fresh parsley. Pour the marinade over the prawns and toss them until they are well coated. Cover the bowl and place it in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours.
Preheat a grill a pan over medium-high heat. Sprinkle the prawns with salt and pepper and add the prawns to the pan and allow them to cook until they begin to turn pink and the shell looks nicely roasted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Turn the prawns and cook them on the opposite side, about 2 to 3 minutes more or until the prawns are cooked through and pink. Serve the prawns with lemon wedges, if desired.
The John Dory was a very mild fish that tasted wonderful. The mix of the artichokes and peppers were a nice compliment to the fish itself. If you want a fish that is not going to taste fishy and is a firm but delicate white fish, this could be for you. They went very nicely with some rice pilaf and corn on the cob. The Tiger prawns are something of a treat, since they can be quite expensive. The best way I can describe them is that it is like eating a lobster tail. The meat is very similar and has wonderful flavor to it. We cut them up and shared 2 of them among us and it was more than enough. Make sure you clean them out well when you go to devein them as it is a large amount to remove and you do need to be careful handling them. These would be great on the barbecue as well as the grill pan and cooking them in the shell is the best way to go.
That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!