Foodie news: Gone fishin’
Special to the Sun
TAHOE/TRUCKEE, Calif. and#8212; Fishing and me go way back, but it took awhile until I got to the point where I could actually cook what I caught. My first fishing season at Millerton Lake near Fresno I caught (in rapid succession) a seagull, a cat (I am not kidding) and my sisterand#8217;s eyelid. None of those really worked for my and#8220;catch of the dayand#8221; menu offerings. Fast forward to present date and I am at Prosser, Stampede or Save Mart reeling and#8217;em in. Often I am the girl at the helm relegated to making sandwiches (another column) but always I am the girl attempting culinary masterpieces of the (cleaned) Mackinaw, Kokanee, Bass or Brown Trout at the end of the day. It took me awhile to get the hang of preparing fish that was, well, not fishy. Experienced fresh water anglers turned me on to the magic of lemon (lots of it) and not just to be used on the fish cleanerand#8217;s hands before he is allowed to touch the children. Following are a few favorites to be used on both bought and caught.
Three medium sized trout or bass, cleaned
1 cup lemon juice
Handful of dried lavender (Available the farmers markets in Truckee, Tahoe City or Incline Village, Nev. Pick up a Tahoe magazine, page 80 for schedule.)
Handful of fresh (or dried) rosemary sprigs
3 Tbls. rock salt, flavored is fine
Rub the fish (drench it really) in lemon juice, inside, and out and then rub the cavity with rock salt. Stuff the fish with lavender and rosemary, season entire fish with a little pepper. To cook, I use a fish basket directly on the hot grill or low open pit flames, about 4 minutes on each side, until skin is crispy. You can place the fish directly on your barbecue, again, four minutes per side, if the grill it has been well seasoned, otherwise they will stick.
Notice I used a generic, all encompassing and#8220;catch of the dayand#8221;and#8230; I make this with red snapper or halibut if I come home from a long day fishing empty handed. And what was that guy across the lake from us using? Chum? Live minnows? Quagga mussels? Something illegal Iand#8217;m sure for him to pull them in like that! But I digress. The preparation and#8211; lake or store bought and#8211; is similar, but for fresh water fish you must remove the bone/spine before topping with the relish and sour cream mixture. Tip: Make the relish and sour cream/cilantro puree about an hour ahead of time and refrigerate until needed.
4 pieces halibut, about 5-6 ounces each
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup flour
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup canola oil
Mix all dry ingredients and dredge fish on both sides. Heat oil on high and them reduce to medium-high. Fry fish in oil, about 5 minutes per side, or until light brown. Top with relish and sour cream puree (both follow) and serve with mashed potatoes.
1 Tbsp. honey
1 cup corn kernels
1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1 red pepper, finely chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro (no stems) finely chopped
1 Tbls. apple cider vinegar
Mix all ingredients and refrigerate until serving.
1/2 cup sour cream
Juice of one lime
1/2 bunch cilantro, stems discarded
Salt and pepper
Combine all ingredients and mix in blender for about one minute. Refrigerate until serving.