Fishing in the Gulf of Mexico is slowly picking up pace after almost 4 months of cleaning up the BP oil spill. Last week, The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reopened 5,130 miles of Gulf waters along the southern coast of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida.
NOAA sampled the area for both shrimp and finfish, including mackerel and snapper. With no signs of contamination, the Gulf of Mexico is now open to all fishing.
Just in time as Chef Mason shared with us one of his favorite seafood recipes, Poached Spanish Mackerel with Vegetable Broth. Luckily, for this South Atlantic based fish, schools of Spanish mackerel spend their winters in Florida, swim north to the Carolinas and Virginia in early April and migrate to New York in June. As the waters cool down in September, the Spanish Mackerel make their way back to the Gulf of Mexico. This fish could not have better timing! (Fish Watch)
“Mackerel is listed as a Best Choice on Monterey Bay Seafood Watch list,” Chef explains, “but I will say it’s best if eaten the same day!” The National Conference Center participates in Monterey Bay’s sustainable seafood initiative to ensure we are protecting fishery resources and not serving items that are over-fished. Knowing that Spanish Mackerel is a safe bet this fall, we hope you enjoy Chef Mason’s recipe.
SPANISH MACKEREL VIN BLANC
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1 ½ cups clam juice
- 3 TBSP rice wine vinegar
- 3 TBSP olive oil
- 1 onions, cut into thin slices
- 1 carrot, thinly sliced
- 1 zucchini, seeded and sliced thin
- 1 squash, seeded and sliced thin
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 TBSP fresh thyme
- 1 TBSP fresh oregano
- 8 peppercorns
- 8 parsley sprigs
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 pounds Spanish Mackerel fillets
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1. In a medium stainless-steel saucepan, combine the wine, vinegar, oil, onions, carrot, zucchini, squash, garlic, thyme, peppercorns, parsley, bay leaves, and salt. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 5 minutes.
2. Oil a heavy flameproof 9-by-13-inch stainless-steel or enamel pan. Put the fish, skin-side down, in the pan in an even layer. Pour the hot wine broth on the fish, spread the vegetables over the fillets in an even layer, and sprinkle with the ground pepper. Cover with aluminum foil and bring to a simmer over moderately high heat.
3. Reduce the heat and cook at a gentle simmer until the fish is just done, about 10 minutes for 1/2-inch-thick fillets. Remove the parsley and bay leaves. Serve in shallow bowls.
Yield: 4 servings