Foodbuzz Alaska Seafood Dinner

Hello everyone, and happy Tuesday! I am so excited to be writing a post for Foodbuzz on my Alaska Seafood food and wine pairing. I could not believe it when my proposal was chosen, but sure enough on Thursday I received a shipping slip that said my neighbors had signed for my Alaskan cod. . .

I couldn’t track them down until Friday, and I spent night worrying that they somehow missed the fact that the package was full of fish. Luckily, they didn’t and my cod was frozen solid when I picked it up. Phew! That would have been icky. . .

My big cooler of cod also included instructions on cooking the fish from frozen, a pamphlet on sustainability, a little box of recipes, and an amazing booklet full of ideas from around the world for seafood preparation.

Alaska Seafood Sustainability Alaska Seafood Recipes

I was instantly interested in the sustainability information. Alaska has perfect conditions for some of the world’s best seafood which obviously means it is in demand, so the steps toward sustainability are very hopeful. Alaska Seafood is responsible for the marketing of Alaska seafood, hence all of the great information on their site and the recipes and other materials they sent to me.

Sustainable Alaska Seafood – Introduction

  • Sustainability: Means fisheries can exist long-term without compromising the surrounding ecosystem
  • All Alaska seafood is wild and sustainable, and it is managed for protection against overfishing, habitat damage, and pollution
  • Alaska is dedicated to preserving and protecting this superior seafood for future generations
  • Since 1959, the Alaska Constitution has mandated that “fish…be utilized, developed and maintained on the sustained yield principle”
  • Every aspect of Alaska’s fisheries has been strictly regulated, closely monitored and rigidly enforced for nearly five decades
  • Alaska sets the standard for precautionary resource management
  • Alaska’s successful management practices are considered a model of sustainability for the entire world
  • Alaska Seafood Recipes

    It didn’t take me long to decide what I wanted to make for my dinner party, and once I had the flavors in mind, I chose the wine pairings.

    Travessia rose Greco di Tufo wine

    For our first course, I paired Travessia Rosé with a chilled avocado soup. The main course and star of the show was roasted Alaskan cod, paired with Greco di Tufo from Italy, a wine recommended by The Urban Grape.

    For both dishes, I started with as much local produce as possible. Other than my avocados, everything was MA grown, and the lone habanero pepper was the one and only from my garden this year. Wooohoo! Doesn’t get much more local than that!

    Fresh Produce

    The soup was as simple as tossing a few ingredients in a blender:

    4 avocados

    1 habanero pepper

    1 clove garlic

    1.5 cups buttermilk

    1 cup very cold water

    Puree until smooth, and add cold water as needed to turn into a soupy consistency.

    I topped the soup with olive oil poached shrimp and sweet corn. Local corn this time of year is so flavorful, it doesn’t even need butter! I dusted the whole thing with some cumin for flavor.

    Olive oil poached shrimp garlic

    The soup is creamy and spicy, the habanero giving just enough heat to make it delicious but not unbearably spicy. The cumin lent that bit of smokiness, the corn and shrimp some sweetness. And the Travessia wine, as always, really paired well with food.

    chilled avocado soup

    chilled avocado soup

    My main course was a roasted cod with a lemony garlic wine sauce atop summer squash and zucchini. My Foodbuzz proposal was for green beans, but when I got to the farmers’ market, the squash looked better, so I went for it! While the oven was preheating, I cut the squash in very thin slices.

    zucchini and squash

    Meanwhile I got out some of the most important ingredients (besides the cod, of course!). Butter is necessary in this dish, trust me. And if you have Kerrygold, all the better. ;)

    Kerrygold butter

    Garlic is also key in this recipe, and I am not talking finely minced garlic. This recipe requires thinly sliced pieces of garlic that can be browned in the butter. It’s the only way.

    And then there was the Alaskan cod. For the Foodbuzz meal, we were instructed to NOT thaw the fish, something I have never done before. In fact, all day long, I would forget and think “Ohmygod, I need to thaw the fish!”. It turns out that you can roast fish from frozen, and it comes out perfectly. I never would have guessed. I was scared.

    Alaska cod

    For this recipe, as in most of my recipes, I really eyeballed everything. For the sauce for every 2 fish fillets, I used the following:

    3 large cloves garlic, sliced in long slices

    3 tablespoons butter

    3 tablespoons olive oil

    a splash Greco di Tufo white wine

    juice of 1/2 lemon

    I started out by sautéing the butter and garlic until the butter was foamy and the garlic a little brown. Then I carefully added the olive oil, lemon juice, and finally the wine. Meanwhile, the fish was roasting at 450 degrees for about 18 minutes. Once the fish was done, I plated it with steamed veggies and ladled the sauce on top of it.

    Zucchini and squash

    Topped with some fresh lemons for squeezing, it was very light and flavorful.

    image

    As you can see, the fish is just perfect. It was flaky, melt in your mouth and delicately flavored. The sauce that I made did not overwhelm that lovely natural flavor; it all worked together very well. The Greco di Tufo had nice citrusy notes that complemented the lemon and cut through the fat of the butter and olive oil.

    Alaskan Cod

    I loved being able to experience the flavor of Alaskan fish straight from Alaska and right out the freezer. It was incredibly easy to cook the fish from the freezer, and I will definitely be using this method from now on. It is the working person’s dream come true to be able to have quality fish from freezer to plate in less than 20 minutes! Cooking from frozen not only saves time, but it can also help save food. There have been many times where I thawed fish only to get home too late to cook it or decided to go out instead, sometimes wasting valuable food in the meantime :(

    Thank you, Foodbuzz, for accepting my proposal and allowing me to participate in this event. I am certain my meal will not be the fanciest or most technical among the group, but I definitely used the best quality ingredients, and as my husband always mentions, cooked it with lots of love and enthusiasm!

    Share
    1. A Boston Food Diary’s avatar

      This is BEAUTIFUL! What a great idea…and fantastic pairings!

      Reply

    2. MelissaNibbles’s avatar

      This looks delicious. So light and summery!

      Reply

    3. Daisy’s avatar

      what a perfect summer meal. the dishes you create always amaze me, as does the process of how you decide to pair them with certain wines. nice job!

      Reply

    4. Megan’s avatar

      Yum! I am so jealous – I really wanted to be part of this but I guess my proposal wasn’t good enough!
      I love that you always pair your meals with wine, especially because I am a n00b when it comes to wine. Some day I’ll be able to make good wine choices!

      Reply

    5. Michelle’s avatar

      Kudos to your winning proposal! This looks like a fantastic seafood dinner and I love that you used local ingredients!

      Reply

    6. Elina’s avatar

      The whole meal looks incredible. I missed the deadline for the proposal but I’m glad you got it because now I know how to cook a fish from frozen. :)

      Reply

    7. Sues’s avatar

      That looks awesome!! Nice work :) And so nice of your neighbors to freeze the fish for you hehe. I’d be worried they’d steal it and eat it themselves! I LOVE Kerrygold butter :)

      Reply

    8. Megan’s avatar

      Thinly sliced garlic browned in butter… definitely the only way! I’ve been picking up the frozen fish at Whole Foods or TJ’s and was nervous about cooking it from frozen too, but that’s what it says to do. Amazing how well it works. As always, I love that you suggest wine pairings and use local food. Hooray for that habanero!

      Reply

    9. Justin’s avatar

      Wow, that soup looks awesome. I might have to steal that recipe.

      Reply

    10. ashleigh’s avatar

      Everything that you make looks great- so fresh and delicious!

      I need to make that soup!

      Reply

    11. Jennifer’s avatar

      What a wonderful meal. It made me homesick for Seattle, where I was sooooo spoiled! Thanks for sharing the frozen roast detail, I never knew it could be cooked that way.

      Reply

      1. traveleatlove’s avatar

        I am sure the fish in Seattle is amazing! I would love to go there someday.

        Reply

      2. Flyoverfoodie’s avatar

        The soup looks amazingly rich and creamy. And I love that your neighbors signed for your fish…I love stuff like that. They were probably hoping for an invite. :)

        Reply

        1. traveleatlove’s avatar

          I probably should have invited them!

          Reply

        2. Robyn @ Wannabe Writer Runner’s avatar

          How awesome! I’m jealous of your cooking skills. Olive oil poached shrimp? Sounds fancy. But looks delish!

          Reply

          1. traveleatlove’s avatar

            Thanks! I am not even sure if I did it correctly, but they tasted good and I didn’t burn anything down! :)

            Reply

          2. Terri’s avatar

            Wow, that meal looks delicious! I will definitely be stealing this recipe! I never knew about cooking fish frozen, either. I think I will be making cod much more often now!

            Reply

          3. Isabella’s avatar

            Yum! I want to be invited to eat at your house!

            Reply

            1. traveleatlove’s avatar

              Come on over!

              Reply

            2. Carolyn Jung’s avatar

              That IS amazing that you can cook the fish perfectly rock-hard frozen. A great tip, especially for harried weekdays, too.

              Reply

            3. Brian @ A Thought For Food’s avatar

              Congrats on this wonderful opportunity! This really is a great piece. I am a huge fan of sustainably caught fish and I suggest that people do whatever they can to purchase fish that is sustainable. And we should all do our best to buy local seafood (and any other ingredients) too.

              If anyone is interested, Whole Foods does their best to carry as much sustainably caught seafood as they can.

              For more info: http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/values/seafood.php

              Reply

              1. traveleatlove’s avatar

                That is a great site and important to know about their sustainability. I often find fish that I just won’t buy because I question its origin and the practices used.

                Reply

              2. Jen@Twenty-Something and Starving’s avatar

                I need that soup. Now. How do you think it ships? Heh. :)

                Reply

              3. kateiscooking’s avatar

                I love the avocado soup recipe and happen to have all the ingredients… Congrats on the fantastic dinner :-) kateiscooking

                Reply

              4. Kelly’s avatar

                Yum. I don’t think you give yourself enough credit, I think this looks fantastic. I also participated so it’s been fun to see what others have made. I also love the sound of your avocado soup, how could anyone possibly not love that?

                Where in MA are you at? I lived there up until 6 months ago, but then recently moved to Chicago. I used to do some of the local food blogger events there. Is it possible I’ve met you and never matched a face with a name & blog?

                Reply

              5. Claudia’s avatar

                An absolutely beautiful dinner… the wine, the soup, the produce. Hmmm… if I knew what you were having I would’ve dropped by.

                Reply

              6. megan @ whatmegansmaking’s avatar

                Your meal looks delicious! I love seeing what you created. I just posted my post about Wild Alaska Salmon today, so it was fun seeing what you came up with! and I agree with a previous commenter – you don’t give yourself enough credit – it looks delicious!

                Reply

                1. traveleatlove’s avatar

                  Thanks for commenting! Going to check yours out right now!

                  Reply

                2. enrico’s avatar

                  Looks delicious!!!

                  Reply

                3. Mark’s avatar

                  Awesome, yumminess Meghan! Love it!

                  Reply

                4. enrico’s avatar

                  I also agree that you do not give yourself enough credit- if I try more than burning water I would be responsible for a mass poisoning… :) The pictures look amazing – BUZZ!!!

                  Reply

                5. Chris Louie’s avatar

                  I love it, fresh and fairly simple. I am definitely trying the avocado soup with that gorgeous shrimp on top. BUZZ from here!

                  Reply

                  1. traveleatlove’s avatar

                    Thank you! The cod dinner was really delicious, but the avocado soup was simply addictive!

                    Reply

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