National Fisherman

The Rudderpost 

jesJes Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman magazine and NationalFisherman.com.

 

Eric Haynes’ Cod Cakes

  • 2 pounds 8-oz cod fillets, fresh if available
  • 4 ounces fresh bread crumbs
  • 2 ounces onion, diced fine
  • 1 ounces celery, diced fine
  • 1 ounces red bell pepper, diced fine
  • 1 ounces green bell pepper, diced fine
  • 2 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 oz. heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Tabasco
  • Cooking oil or clarified butter as needed
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For those of you overdosing on butter, flour, sugar and all the other delicious ingredients Christmas treats have to offer, I thought I'd suggest a recovery meal of sorts.

This quick and easy tuna niçoise is made with oil-packed canned tuna. I remember when all tuna came this way, and now it's making a comeback to regular grocery shelves.

I use:

Green leaf lettuce
Grape tomatoes
Pickling cucumbers
Boiled eggs
Red potatoes, steamed
Haricots vert, steamed and chilled (regular green beans will do, but these skinny French beans are worth it if you can find them)
Artichoke hearts, quartered (I like the cans from Goya, not marinated)
Italian or Greek olives (whatever you prefer)
Newman's Own balsamic vinaigrette (I also like a zesty Italian)
Tuna packed in olive oil

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Serve with a crusty bread if you must, but this meal is hearty and satisfying, especially after days of overindulging!

Merry Christmas!

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I love grilling season.

It gives us a chance to move away from the gas grill that sits outside the kitchen door and into the yard, where we keep our charcoal grill.

There's nothing better than the smoky flavor of lump charcoal or mesquite, especially when it comes to searing tuna.

This salad feeds two tuna lovers.

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Ingredients

1/2 pound sushi-grade yellowfin tuna
1/2 pound new potatoes, lightly boiled and split
1/4 pound haricots vert (or skinny green beans), blanched, cooled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1/2 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, split
1/2 cup pitted Niçoise olives (calamatas will do, too)
2 eggs, hard-boiled (careful to keep the yolks yellow)* and quartered
Half a head of romaine lettuce, rinsed and dry
Capers, parsley and chives to garnish

Dressing (blend and serve immediately)

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar or fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon honey
Anchovy paste, salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup olive oil (regular or extra virgin)
If you like your tuna black and blue, then just sear it on high heat on the grill. (Make sure you do not use lighter fluid if you're going to put your fish in the flame!) Let it cool slightly, then slice as you like.

* To keep your hard-boiled egg yolks from turning green, dry and pasty, try bringing them to a boil in a covered pan of cold water, boil for three minutes, then turn off the heat and uncover the pan. Wait until the eggs are almost cool enough to touch to peel and serve.

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This is a perfect late spring meal, because it's hearty, but lightened with spring vegetables and delicious halibut.

My favorite way to cook and eat halibut is grilled with a touch of olive oil, salt and pepper. It doesn't need much adornment.

This meal works best with a grill cook and a stove-top cook, because you can't leave your risotto unattended while it cooks, and you definitely don't want it to sit around long after it's done.

We have long winters here in Maine, so we have a small gas grill right outside the kitchen door that allows us to grill year-round. It also comes in handy for meals like this!


Ingredients

1 1/2 to 2 pounds halibut fillets
Olive oil
1 small sweet onion (or 1/2 leek*), chopped
1 cup arborio rice
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (or 1/2 cup white wine and 3 1/2 cups broth)
2-4 strands saffron
1 cup sugar snap peas, chopped (or fresh peas, shelled)
1 bunch asparagus, stems trimmed (about a pound)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper
Lemon
Optional garnishes: parsley and scallions

Season and oil your fish and asparagus so they are ready for the grill.

Put a medium, heavy-bottom saucepan on medium heat and add a tablespoon or two of olive oil. Once it's warm, add your onions and cook until translucent. If the pan is dry, add more oil, then add the arborio. Stir and cook the rice until its edges are translucent. Toss in your saffron and some salt and pepper.

Add half a cup of chicken broth or the white wine. Cook, stirring, until the pan is almost dry. Adjust the heat so you're cooking the risotto at a simmer.

Add the chicken broth half a cup at a time, stirring as it cooks. About 15 minutes into the risotto cooking, have the grill cook start the asparagus and halibut.

When the asparagus is off the grill, chop it into 1/2-inch pieces and add it and the peas to the risotto right after you add the last 1/2 cup of chicken broth.

When the risotto is close to the consistency you want, add the parmesan and salt and pepper to taste.

Serve in bowls with slices of the halibut on top. Garnish with chopped parsley and/or scallions and a hearty squeeze of fresh lemon. Serves four.

* If you use a leek, it's easiest to clean it after it's chopped. There are lots of places for dirt to hide in leek leaves, and you don't want a gritty risotto.

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I gave my husband a copy of the Savoring Maine calendar for Christmas. Each month has a recipe with locally grown (and readily available) ingredients for that time of year. (Kind of a big deal when there's a crust of ice over everything, including Casco Bay.)

January's recipe was Bloody Mary Oysters, but oysters are perfect anytime, and especially Valentine's Day.

We picked up half a dozen each of Glidden Point and Winter Point Maine oysters and decided to do some with a modified Rockefeller recipe, as well. 

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Bloody Mary Oysters (slightly modified for our taste from the original)

  • Half dozen of your favorite local oysters, cleaned and opened
  • 1/2 cup tomato juice (we used our store-brand V-8-style blend)
  • 1/4 cup vodka
  • 1 tablespoon horseradish
  • Several generous dashes of Tabasco
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 celery stalk, diced fine
  • Diced dilly beans (optional garnish)

Blend all the ingredients except the celery, oysters and optional dilly beans. Put the oysters in a glass or sippable dish, pour Bloody Mary blend over and garnish with celery and dilly beans.

Oysters Rockefeller

  • Half dozen oysters, cleaned and opened (carefully, as you'll be eating from the shells, so watch out for shards!)
  • 1 strip of thick bacon, diced
  • 2 teaspoons fennel, diced fine
  • 2 tablespoons cooked spinach
  • 3 teaspoons bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons diced scallions
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • sprinkle of cayenne
  • parmesan, shredded (to taste)

Fry the bacon in a pan and use the drippings to sauté the fennel. Add the spinach if you're using raw (we generally use frozen) and cook until wilted. Divide all the ingredients among your half-shells, topping them with the parmesan. Broil until just browned (about seven minutes).

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Many of us will be eating turkey this week. But if you are in New England, you should consider at least starting the meal with lobster.

I was born and raised a Southern gal, but I moved to New England many years ago and have adopted some delicious Yankee recipes over the years.

Northern folks love their chowders. The ubiquitous clam chowder, corn chowder, lobster, fish, you get the idea. Corn chowder, as I understand, is a very inexpensive way to fill your belly and load up with some fat to help you survive the winters up here. My family turned to beans, rice and slaw in the lean times, and my in-laws pour a bowl of corn chowder. Add a comment

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Trout LemonCaperSauceThis recipe for two is great with any texture of white fish, from flounder to shark. I tried it with a river trout recently and just about ate my weight. The flavors are all Mediterranean, so I paired it with a Caprese-style appetizer of mozzarella, tomato and basil on soft bread. Add a comment

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Forget tilapia. Fish tacos are far more delicious with wild American fish. My husband and I cobbled together this recipe just in time for summer grilling.

1 pound mahimahi (also try swordfish, shark, tuna or any grillable fish)
8 small corn tortillas

Slaw
2 cups of shredded white cabbage (half a small head)
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sour cream

Marinade
1/4 cup canola oil
juice of 1 lime
1 teaspoon garlic, pressed or minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander

Toppings
Mango salsa (buy it or follow my recipe — see below)
Avocado slices
Onion slivers
Red bell pepper, diced or sliced
Cilantro
Lime
Hot sauce (I like green Tabasco on these)
Sour cream

Toss the cabbage in the lime juice, vinegar and sour cream. Sprinkle with salt and let it sit for at least an hour.

Marinate the fish up to an hour, then slice into equal pieces and grill.

Dscn0077Spritz the tortillas with water and toss them on the grill, about 30 seconds on each side.

Assemble your tacos with fish, slaw and your toppings of choice.

We had these with Mexican rice and refried beans topped with melted Monterey Jack cheese and a simple green salad.

Mango salsa
1 mango, peeled and diced
1 jalapeno, minced (keep the ribs and seeds for extra spice)
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
Juice of 1 lime
1/4 cup red onion or scallion greens, diced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
Drizzle of olive oil

Let the jalapeno, garlic and ginger soak in the lime juice in a medium bowl while you prepare the other ingredients. Then toss it all together and enjoy.

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National Fisherman Live

National Fisherman Live: 9/23/14

In this episode:

'Injection' plan to save fall run salmon
Proposed fishing rule to protect seabirds
Council, White House talk monument expansion
Louisiana shrimpers hurt by price drop
Maine and New Hampshire fish numbers down

 

Inside the Industry

The Golden Gate Salmon Association will host its 4th Annual Marin County Dinner at Marin Catholic High School, 675 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Kentfield on Friday, Oct 10, with doors opening at 5:30 p.m.

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The Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative is introducing its Chef Ambassador Program. Created to inspire and educate chefs and home cooks across the country about the unique qualities of lobster from Maine, the program showcases how it can be incorporated into a range of inspired culinary dishes.

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