Inspired by the gorgeous summer weather I decided to stop by my favorite fish market for a lobster tail. Living smack dab next to the Atlantic Ocean has a few perks, one of them being just caught lobster tails for 5 dollars. I decided to pair it with some peppery arugala from my garden, but if you are not a green thumb store bought works just as well.
Who says you have to go out for happy hour. Going out gets expensive and strains your wallet and your waistline. After hearing my sister had a rough day I wanted to do something nice for her. Of course being thrifty and broke as usual I couldn’t take her out so I got creative.
While sitting in church last week I heard my priest mention an article about the contents of chef’s refrigerators and what it says about their personalities. For those of you who are wondering what it’s called, you can find the article in the entitled “You Probably Don’t Want To Look in the Crisper” in the NY Times.
After two weeks of diligent trips to attempt to catch a fish with no avail, I decided to whip up a healthy pasta substitute to get my seafood fix. While I thoroughly love that living less than 100 yards from the ocean enables you to take casual fishing trips after work, there are only so many cold windy nights in the dark a girl can take. I instead settled for the next best thing, a delicate and delicious figure friendly pasta that has the flavors of fried fish.
Fish stories are like tall tales or men and their ya know … parts. Men just love to run around talking about how big it is, even the smallest fish somehow becomes a whale after the story is finished. Maybe it’s an ego thing who knows. But, after 24 years of fishing in the big blue I have come to find that it really doesn’t matter how big a fish is, in fact sometimes the small ones taste better. I have caught all kinds of fish, big and small, as well as other creatures that live under the sea (though I have yet to catch a sponge that lives in a pineapple). My favorite thing in the summer is get up at the butt crack of dawn and head out to the ocean on the Van Arsdalen family vessel, the legendary “Reel Daze”. Why the butt crack of dawn you ask, because my grandfather does not believe leaving after the sun comes up; why I will never know. However, nothing tastes better than catching your fish in the morning and eating it that night. Yes, I’m aware I’m spoiled, but can you blame me.
Being a born and raised fisher-girl I have had fish in just about every way possible. So I decided that I would share my insider knowledge with the world, even those people that I like to laugh at for freaking out when a crab comes near them. Periodically I will post some of my favorite recipes for you to try at home. Yes, seafood can get expensive but if you get it yourself it’s pretty much free. However, if you’re a chummer like my mom I suggest avoiding the open sea and trying a small local fish market. They tend to be less expensive than buying it at the food store, and in my experience have better product. If you buy a fish whole and filet it yourself it’s even cheaper. Still, I strongly recommend catching it yourself. Not only do you get a sense of accomplishment, but there is nothing as good as fresh caught fish.
On my last haul I caught two sea bass, and I would like to point out that I was the only person who caught anything (insert victory dance here)! This was especially exciting because my culinary ambitiousness was pushing me to make my own ceviche. I love having it in restaurants, but its hefty price tag starts to wear on your wallet after a while. Not only that but I figured the fish can’t get much fresher then catching it yourself; maybe if you eat it on the boat like me, but in my defense I was three and there was a fish in my hand; it seemed like the logical thing to do. Anyway, the ceviche turned out to be fabulous and thus it is my first recipe in the fish stories book. I hope they inspire you to boatly go where no man has gone before!
Simple Sea Bass Ceviche
2 cups of fresh Sea Bass – Cleaned and cubed
1 lime juiced
½ a lemon juices
Squeeze of orange juice
½ tsp red pepper flakes
Handful of cilantro- Finely chopped
4 basil leaves- sliced thin
Salt and pepper to taste
Keep you wallets full and your mouths happy!
Copyright © 2012 Christine Van Arsdalen. All Rights Reserved