Tag Archives: fish

Grey Lynn Farmers’ Market with David Schofield

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Grey Lynn Farmers’ Market Guest post and photos by Tree House Kitchen blogger, Mel Tan.

“As with all good spinach, it’s still got dirt on it”
~ David Schofield

You get people who cook, people who teach others how to cook, and people who are champions of food. David Schofield is all three.

For some, David needs no introduction, having won several awards including NZ Culinary Fare’s New Zealand Chef of the Year 2011. I had not previously heard of David – but following Sunday’s demonstration, will be keen to read/see more of him again.

On Sunday, I yanked myself out of bed a little later than I meant to, arriving at the bustling Grey Lynn Farmers’ Market just minutes before David’s demo was due to begin. When I got there and saw all the great looking stalls, I immediately regretted my laziness, for there was now no time to shop before the demo…

Out in the courtyard, grey clouds gathered and a few tears spilled from the sky, but a small crowd appeared nonetheless. A kind lady wiped the chairs with a tea towel and we all sat down in front of David’s stand/kitchen/screen, eager to see what David would present.

In just two hours (with an intermission in between), David produced five dishes – with yummy samples for lucky us. And I don’t know about everyone else, but I came away with way more than just recipes and good food in my tummy – I also gained tips, knowledge and laughter.

I think the skies liked David’s demo too. It held in the rain. 🙂

First dish on the tasty menu: cheese dreams (see above). The name itself was enough to make me swoon; but add in Over the Moon cheese curd, some quality bread, free range NZ bacon and a nicely poached egg – and there you have it; a breakfast to keep you dreaming happily all day. David also got Roland from Over the Moon to chat briefly about their cheese and share ideas on what to do with the cheese curd (pair it with salmon, spinach, roasted veges – mmm!)

Dish #2 involved ginger syrup, honey, some luscious wet and natural jam, strawberries… a sweet dance on the tongue and very pretty to look at.

Next, David whipped up what he calls “a play on French Toast”. He blithely cooked while telling us the truth about bright orange salmon (source of colour: carrot pellets). A not-so-pretty tale behind a lovely colour; a good lesson in deciphering “real and fresh” from “lies consumers believe”, I think! David’s emphasis on fresh and local food came through from start to finish of his demo by way of little facts like the colour we may expect fresh salmon to be – salmon feeding on kura may be reddish in colour, while salmon feeding on seaweed may tend towards white tones, etc.

He reminded us that when we reject fresh and local produce in favour of perfectly shaped, unblemished, brightly coloured produce, growers have little choice but to (1) import from overseas, (2) discard perfectly good produce that doesn’t meet these “ideals”, (3) add additives/modify our vegetables to meet our demands. Sure makes me think twice about how I pick my veges!

He also mentioned another point which I like very much: “Every time you buy an NZ product, it tastes just as good as its overseas equivalent, and it keeps someone here employed”.

The salmon “French Toast” (see above), complete with a lovely tomato paste, was put in the oven just long enough to warm (but not cook) the salmon… it emerged beautifully flavoured, and David paired it with a fennel and mesclun salad. I’m pretty sure this dish could steal a smile from the grumpiest human you know.

During the intermission, I hastened in to look at the stalls… and my eye fell on some Good Things indeed (green apple olive oil, creamy cheese, spicy and sweet ginger syrup – just to name a few!)

When we reconvened, David showed us two lavish and simple (the combination sounds contradictory, but it’s true!) dishes: oyster and spinach with lemon pappardelle, and fresh flounder with broad beans and fresh greens. I didn’t get to try the flounder, but the oyster pasta was precious to sample – just imagine soft, quivering, oyster mingled with gently wilted spinach and fresh, generous wide pappardelle ribbons… it was honest, calming and delicious.

It was a pleasure to watch David cook, and inhale the good smells. Vanilla-toned pappardelle bearing the hallmark of freshness: uneven edges. Broad beans tinkering from David’s fingers into a bowl. The warming, nutty aroma of beurre noisette. The sound of fish sizzling in the skillet. So much colour and freshness.

David’s demo was a display of abundance, a reflection of the truth David mentioned at one point: we live in a country where you can visit your Neighbour with the Lemon Trees or go out with a line and catch an honest-to-goodness fish (so why don’t we realise how lucky we are more often?).

Along with the laughs (on David’s generous “pinches” of salt and “pats” of butter, etc), we also gleaned a gallon of great kitchen/food tips from David. I’ll share a few here:

  • On de-veining spinach: fold the spinach leaf like you’d fold a heart (vertically), then gently tear away the stalk.
  • On shucking oysters: grip the oyster with a dish towel, and hold a shucking knife in your other hand. Run the knife along the opening, and pry the shell apart. Open the oyster over a bowl so you don’t lose the juices. (Use the juices in the dish too).
  • On fresh vegetables: better with dirt and insects than bleach (another “lie consumers believe” = clean, sparkling leaves with a sanitised smell are fresh and good… not true).
  • On pepper: it is not a season, but a spice – it alters flavour.
  • On fish fins: snip off with scissors prior to cooking, as they burn quickly in the pan.
  • On removing fish skin: make a cut under the fish skin, dab on some salt to give some grip, then use your thumb and pull the fish skin off.

Here is a picture of David showing us how to take the bone off… admittedly I didn’t see how he did it: one blink, one lift and the bone was out!

David was as generous with food samples as he was with taking questions, and people gathered to ask more questions at the end:

I regrettably had to dash off while David was still taking questions. Late in the afternoon, I came home to my market/NZ produce-lunch – not quite David’s fare (yet), but delicious in my hungriness nevertheless: fresh sourdough topped with Over the Moon black truffle brie (triple cream brie with truffle in the middle… it is every bit as good as it sounds), J. Friend and Co Northern Rata honey (sweet, gently earthy and delicate), and a spicy hot toddy made with Hakanoa Ginger Syrup (the BEST). I look forward to cooking a few things based on David’s recipes soon!

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Thanks for stopping by Mel, it was great to have you there, braving the weather.. we were equally amazed at the amazing food that David cooked, and at how easy he made it look – definitely some cooking inspiration for everyone who was lucky enough to be there! David really wasthe perfect finish to the Out Standing in their Fields tour, with his passion for all things fresh and local. No wonder he’s Chef of the Year! – Kylie + Blair –

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Nelson Farmers’ Market with Jan Bilton and Chris Fortune

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Nelson Farmers’ Market put on a beautiful day for us, very sunny and entertaining! And just a little bit warmer than Methven had been… Nelson is one of the few mid-week  markets in the country, and it was great to see people popping by for some, fresh, seasonal food on their lunchbreak, and getting to try some of the delicious Out Standing samples from our chefs!

Jan Bilton was one of our Out Standing chefs for the day, and she showed me a new way with dukkah – I can’t say it had ever occured to me to use it as a crumb for meat! Check out Jan’s Dukkah coated Gurnard with Celeriac and Potato Mash here:

Jan Bilton’s Dukkah-dusted fish

serves 2

  • 300 g Fresh White Fish Fillets
  • 50 g Macadamia nut dukkah
  • 200 g Celeriac
  • 100 g Potato
  • 40 ml Hazelnut oil

Dice the celeriac and potato and cook in boiling salted water for approx 10 mins, coat the fish fillets Macadamia Nut dukkah and pan fry in hazelnut oil for just 2 mins per side. Drain the celeriac and mash together, spooning onto your serving plate with fish fillets ontop, garnish with Italian parsley and a drizzle of Local olive oil.

I think this was the most flavourful fish I have ever tasted – Jan, you have definitely got another convert! Chris Fortune also put in an appearance, demonstrating a Chorizo, Apple and Salsify Salad: I have to admit, I wasn’t too sure what on earth a Salsify was, but having tried it I can definitely recommend giving it a try. Think of it as the slightly unattractive cousin of your common parsnip 🙂

Check out the video for the full details on Chris’s Salad below:

Chris Fortune’s Chorizo, apple & salsify salad

  • 150 g Salsify
  • 100 g Florence Fennel
  • 1 Lemon
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 50 g Black Olives
  • 100 g Granny Smith Apples
  • 20 g Italian Parsley
  • 150 g Chorizo
Peel and blanch the salsify for 2 mins and refresh in cold water, shave the fennel bulb with a potato peeler and squeeze in juice of one lemon, pit olives and chop roughly.  Add to fennel.  Peel the apples and slice thickly with the Chorizo, pan-fry in a hot pan, add chopped parsley and season.   Serve on top of the fennel salad and drizzle with a little olive oil and finish with salsify.

Thanks for stopping by, we will see you all next time when we visit Wairarapa Farmers’ Market. Till then, happy cooking! – Kylie + Blair+

Oamaru Farmers’ Market with Annie Beattie and James Glucksman

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We visited Oamaru Farmers’ Market last Sunday, so this is a little overdue – but its been a very busy week! Which started in Oamaru with a personal culinary first for us both..

Black Pudding was definitely a first for me, and I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised – despite still being a bit mentally put-off by its contents! Annie Beattie defintely brought out its delicious side by pairing it with a delicious fresh salad and roasted pumpkin. Check it out here:

I haven’t written up a recipe as its basically just a really good technique for an unusual product, and a really delicious salad using fresh, local and seasonal products which happened to be available that morning – I recommend just playing it by ear with whatever is fresh and available 🙂

James Glucksman from Pen-y-bryn Lodge also put on an Out Standing demo, impressing us all with the simplicity of Fish fillets baked in a pouch – it seems like a really simple way to prepare fish, plus no cleaning up afterwards! (I’m his biggest fan ever after he managed to do an entire recipe without any dishes)

Check out the video here:

The full recipe also seems really simple, I think I will have to give this a go once we have finished living in our wee campervan 🙂

FISH FILLET COOKED IN A POUCH – JAMES GLUCKSMAN

Ingredients:

  • 2 Fish fillets, any kind you like
  • Olive Oil
  • 1 Fennel bulb, sliced thinly
  • 1 Onion, sliced thinly
  • Fresh Herbs (Thyme, Oregano, Bay Leaf)
  • Carrot, sliced thinly
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Lemon Juice

– Heat oven to 180 degrees.

– Drizzle oil on a sheet of aluminium foil,place half the vegetables and herbs on top, followed by the fish.

– Drizzle more oil on top, followed by remaining vegetables and herbs.

– Season with salt, pepper and some lemon juice.

– Crimp foil parcel closed, leaving space for expanding air and bake for 15 minutes.

Sounds easy eh? and I can vouch for the fact that it tastes like you have put a lot more time and effort into it!

It was an incredible day all round, and we were so happy to be part of the inaugural Oamaru Farmers’ Market. All of the stallholders sold out, which is an incredible acheivement for their first day – best of luck to them for the future. Heres a small sample of the awesomeness that was Oamaru:

Catch you all next time! – Blair + Kylie