Friday, August 5, 2011

Blown away

I Stopped at Ahearn's on the way home today.  I am
usually drawn to the dry sea scallops immediately, but 
I also scanned the fish case for some nice fin-fish fillets.
At first I thought I saw frogs' legs, which are certainly
good but not typical of Ahearn's offerings.  I looked
more closely and was thrilled and inspired to see
blowfish!  Of course I asked if they were local, which
they were not (Maryland), but where do the best
crabs come from?  Along with a half pound of
scallops, I got a half pound of blowfish bodies.  The
spine, tail, and dorsal fin were still included, but 
otherwise there were two beautiful loins on each fish.

First I cooked the scallops with a scant amount of 
oil on high heat, removed them to a dish on the side...

added some more oil to shallow fry, lowered the heat 
to 2/3, dredged the blowfish in flour, and fried both sides 
until crisp and brown.   

I had some leftover sticky, Japanese sweet rice which
I mixed with scallions, sesame seeds, sesame oil and
a touch of bacon fat, and snow peas which I boiled
quickly and tossed with oyster sauce.  At the table, I 
drizzled sweet chile sauce over the fish and scallops,
and had a couple beers to wash it all down. The fish was 
mild, sweet and super easy to pry away from the backbone.
No pesky pin-bones to deal with, just two perfect bites per
fish. I kept the presentation simple in honor of a good friend 
of mine who scoffs at over-decorated plates.  What
really matters is flavor, texture, and proper doneness,
all of which were well-achieved. Promise.

P.S.- the tails were crunchy and delicious.  Eat some today.


  1. Looks good, the Blowfish remind me of days gone by, when I was just a small lad, fishing in the Manasquan. In those days Blowfish were plentiful and out numbered any other species. Then they disappeared from sight. Glad to see they might be making a comeback.

  2. When I was a little kid, my dad and uncle rented a boat from some bay in the NJ (I asked my father,he remembers the trip but not the place). What we caught that day were blow fish, I believe they where called by the locals; Sea Squab. I do remember eating them and enjoying them very much.

  3. So when you are talking about blowfish, is it a different species that the infamous Fugu?

  4. I can't wait to cook it again. Yeah, sea squab,
    that's it! With braised cabbage, lentils, and truffle butter.