A fun, delicious dish that makes the most of pricey wild King salmon.
One of the true great pleasures of summer is indulging in local King salmon.
Rich, oily, luscious and deep pinkish-red in color, it’s my favorite fish.
When an assignment took me to Half Moon Bay, I tossed a cooler in the back of my car in hopes of scoring some fresh catch to take home.
I stopped in at Princeton Seafood Company, intent on buying a few fillets. But I walked out with an entire California King salmon instead. At first, the $150 or so total price tag for the nearly 8-pound fish made me gulp. But when you consider that local wild salmon fillets sell for upwards of $28 a pound there and at farmers markets, paying $19 per pound for the entire fish really made more sense, especially if you can’t get enough of salmon like me.
At Princeton Seafood, the friendly fish monger will scale the fish and cut it up however you like. I asked for fillets, skin-on, and for all the bones, too. After all, crispy salmon skin is a true treat to nibble on. I know some people can’t be bothered with the bones, but trust me, they are a trove of meat.
An easy fish dish full of the haunting flavors of saffron, preserved lemon, and sweet paprika.
I remember eating at Joyce Goldstein’s game-changing Square One restaurant in San Francisco.
My best friend and I had saved up our money to dine there, having heard how Goldstein was pushing the envelope of Mediterranean cuisine, which back then was largely relegated to Italian fare. Instead, she expanded greatly upon that, serving up the flavors of Morocco, Turkey, and beyond.
The restaurant did not disappoint. The earthy spices were new to my palate then, and thoroughly captivated me.
So when I received a review copy of her newest cookbook, “The New Mediterranean Jewish Table: Old World Recipes for the Modern Home” (University of California Press), I got doubly excited when I spied a recipe for “Fish with Charmoula.”
As Goldstein writes in the book, quite a few diners at Square One took to calling her the “Queen of Charmoula” because this signature fish dish was often on the menu.
A canned tuna you can feel good about eating.
Our love affair with canned tuna has ebbed and flowed over the years.
Beset by worries about mercury levels and unintended bycatch deaths of dolphins, Americans have cut back on their consumption recently. Still, it’s a good bet that there’s still a tin or two in our cupboards on a fairly regular basis because it’s hard to beat the convenience and versatility of the product.
Sausalito’s Safe Catch Elite Tuna, though, makes it easier for us to enjoy canned tuna with fewer worries.
Every tuna (albacore and skipjack) used by the company is tested for mercury, ensuring a limit of 0.1 parts per million which it touts is 10 times stricter than the FDA action limit. The tuna are wild, sustainably-caught, and additive-free. The fish are packed in BPA-free cans without any added water, oil or preservatives. In fact, the ingredients label on the can is as short as can be — just tuna and salt. You don’t even need to drain the can when you open it because there’s very little liquid in it.
A luxurious little potato crowned with creme fraiche and Black Opal caviar.
California may can lay claim to being the first producer of farmed caviar way back in 1993 with Sacramento County’s successful Sterling Caviar.
But now, the other side of the country is expanding its reach into the game, most notably Healthy Earth Inc.’s Black Opal caviar from Sarasota, FL.
It, too, is farm-raised, from Siberian black sturgeon fed a vegetarian diet. The company has worked with Sarasota’s Mote Marine Laboratory to grow the sturgeon for both meat and caviar.
Avocado toast — with uni — at Bar Crudo.
For folks like my husband, the antidote to too much fancy food is a good ol’ burger.
For folks like me, it’s fish.
Raw fish, to be exact.
So when I was invited in as a guest recently at Bar Crudo in San Francisco, I jumped at the chance.
After all, with the overload of cookies, rich appetizers and big hunks of meat at this time of year, what better way to give the body a rest than with raw fish — Italian-style.
Plus, the restaurant is proudly celebrating its 10th year.
The packed dining room.
You can sit at the bar, too — if you can snag a seat.
I still remember its teeny-tiny, original Bush Street location. Now ensconced on Divisadero Street, it’s still not huge. But the long, narrow quarters here definitely offer more breathing room.
On a recent Saturday night, it was packed inside, with even more folks outside, hoping to snag a table.