I went to a killer wine, cheese, and seafood tasting event at my local Whole Foods Market yesterday. It’s not often you get access to an intimate Q&A session with their top specialty pros.
Surprisingly, I am new to the world of seafood as I was clinging to my childhood repulsion of fish for a few too many years. Thankfully though, I have learned better and am paving the road to changing my ways. As a newbie, I feel a bit intimidated approaching the fish counter at any grocery store, especially higher end ones. But the fishmonger at the tasting debunked all of my worries as he walked our group through the best questions to ask.
Now, you can help them help you! Here are the top three questions to ask at the fish counter this summer.
1. What is local?
The pros behind the counter prefer you take advantage of the nearby sources and serve you what is local to your area. They can give you a rundown of where each seafood item hails from, which directly translates to how fresh and flavorful it will be; not to mention sustainable and eco-friendly! Local means less transportation time to get to the market, which means less fuel emissions from the delivery vehicles. Here’s 8 more reasons to eat local. Feel better about paying the big bucks when you know that most of them are going back to your neighborhood farmers and fishermen.
2. What’s been delivered today?
Similar to the local theme, check to see what is fresh as of that morning. A good fishmonger will have the 4-1-1 on everything coming into their department on an hourly basis. If it can’t be local, knowing that it’s fresh off the delivery truck (or plane) can still help preserve some of the flavor and even the nutrition of the fish. Similar to choosing an avocado when it’s perfectly ripe, they can help you select what will be perfect to cook up that night.
If you can’t prepare the fish that night, make sure it is used within two days or else throw it in the freezer. There’s hardly an excuse not to whip up these easy grilled fish tacos!
Try these Bayou Kabobs, loaded with fresh shrimp, andouille sausage, peppers, and onions!
3. What’s best on the grill?
It’s summer time so make sure you utilize one of the tastiest and most seasonal ways to prepare your favorite fish! Now that the sun is out, use every excuse you can to fire up the BBQ and get grilling! Not only can the fishmongers advise on which seafood to choose, but they have wonderful recipe suggestions. For example, the Whole Foods fish pros favorite way to garnish a salmon burger? Arugula and garlic aoili. Yum!
whole foods image via multivu.com; kabobs image by Kacy Meinecke for DietsInReview.com