As in all areas of life, things go in and out of fashion in the food world. Not too long ago, there was not a beet in sight in the posh cuisine arena. Now even in the backwoods where I live, they are being prepared and shown the respect once reserved for, I don’t know, caviar, truffles, and Dover sole. That tells us many things, but what I am focusing on is that caviar never got that respect in the backwoods. Which doesn’t bash caviar, but highlights the power and the long arm of media. If one well-known person says beets are cool, soon many will agree and they are rediscovered. I recall other not- so- welcomed items: Okra, eggplant, figs, and durian, to name a few in the produce genre. Often the product has been used improperly and the consumer is now not a fan, which is sad. In my youth, spinach was the scary slimy vegetable, but since then it has become understood. Now it’s popular and cool.
Some seafood is tricky to prepare. If tuna or scallops are overcooked, there is not much hope of gaining a fan club. I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s why they are often served raw. With most seafood, it is enough to simply heat it through, often leaving a clear center. If the clear part makes you uneasy – very gently continue to cook, but only until the clear is gone; remember to be careful about overcooking tuna and scallops, they will get tough and chewy.
It is summer and garden-fresh produce is at our fingertips. Raw and slightly cooked is often the way to go with it, as well, if that is your preference.
Charred Rare Ahi Tuna Steak Cucumber Spinach Salad
Ahi Tuna Steaks with Snap Peas, Mushrooms and Sesame Seeds
Salmon Fillets with Roasted Eggplant and Garlic
Salmon Fillets Spicy Yogurt, Red Potatoes and White Corn
Mahimahi Fillets with Sautéed Butter Lettuce and Baby Peas
Mahimahi Fillets with Cantaloupe Salsa
Mussels on the Half Shell with Yukon Potatoes and Dill
Mussels on the Half Shell with Roasted Baby Carrots and Grape Tomatoes
Scallops with Roasted Figs and Red Onion
Breaded Scallops with Okra and Jalapeno