lang leve vis.

Picked up this petite volume the other day (for the low low price of 9.95). It's a better-than-average pamphlet slash cookbook designed to raise awareness about the current state of overfishing and in the process also provide some upscale fish recipes from Dutch "top chefs".

The whole topic of sustainable fishing and aquaculture is frankly full of dissonant logic for me, choosing carefully which species of fish should be killed today so that other species' populations may recover enough to potentially be guiltlessly killed again at some point in the future. And the title of the book is "Long Live Fish!", which I guess they mean figuratively, not literally, because the book is full of really rather crafty and beautiful photos (some of which must be Photoshopped) of apparently non-living fish.

Anyway, yada yada, that's my problem, not yours. The fact is: I eat fish, and I'd like to do so in a way that allows everyone to continue to do so for a long time, and essentially that's what the concept and book are about. The recipes therein are very modern French/European in their approach, stopping just short of the molecular gastronomy realm: there is a foam or two, a little sous-vide here and there, but everything pretty much looks like what it is...there are no trout pillows or scallop lollipops (though there is in fact a horseradish marshmallow now that I think of it).

It's hard to imagine regularly cooking most of the recipes in their entirety: sauteed crayfish with confit of Belgian endive in a mild curry vinaigrette with thinly sliced Granny Smith apple is a just a shade fussy for a weeknight meal. But I'll very likely try the endive confit piece very soon, and most of the recipes have at least one idea in them I'd like to 'speriment with: Dover sole in smoked butter with oysters, sweet and sour leeks and a lemongrass sauce is intriguing, but I'll probably test the smoked butter idea first with something simple.

Overall, it's a nicely designed book (in Dutch), with a helpful one-page guide to buying "green" fish inside (which you can download here), and completely worth picking up if you're a seafood eater who makes choosing your victims carefully a priority.


In this vein, so to speak, I picked up some frozen Alaskan wild salmon (one of the "green" fish) at the Dirk today. It just can't be any good at this price, 3.99 euro for 750 grams (1.65 lbs). I'm going to use the chipotle vinaigrette recipe I posted here and see what happens.

LATER: Let's just say it: PREPARE YOURSELVES FOR A PICTURE OF OVERCOOKED SALMON. The fish was totally edible (though it looked more than a little rough) and this was an excellent way to prepare it. I overcooked pretty thoroughly because, well...I often do this when I get fish from somewhere other than a fishmonger, call it superstition. And I made a couple of substitutions: basil for the cilantro specified in the recipe, and I used coconut vinegar because I didn't have any cider vinegar. It sounded like the right thing to do.

The next time I make this, which will be soon, I'll serve it with a dollop of basil or chive mayonnaise on the side, and team it up with buttered corn and/or potatoes. Muy pleasant. And cheap.


File Under Entertaining: Hezbollah Tofu takes on Anthony Bourdain's (slightly exaggerated for comedic effect, just maybe?) anti-veganism by veganizing Bourdain recipes. Got to give them respect for expertly dissing an expert disser, though after only three recipes I'm starting to want to hear a broader range of insults beyond "asshat". That's just me.


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