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Thursday, December 18, 2014

This and That for the Holidays

Dear Fish Elves,

We are into the countdown now.  Seven days to get it all finished and if we don't get it all done? Well, it's a good guess that no one will notice anyway.  Just do the best you can and then relax!  But keep in mind that spectacular food goes a long way toward making people overlook the things you didn't get accomplished. 

Nantucket Scallops

These beautiful little scallops are available fresh for a very short period of time during the year.  They are smaller than a sea scallop, bigger than a bay scallop and are known for being perfect to eat raw when they are fresh!  They are as sweet as my new puppy and they caramelize beautifully when heated.

Farm Raised Halibut

Great excitement greets the start of the wild halibut season in March as halibut is a favorite for almost every fish-eater.  Conversely, it's a sad day in November when the season ends. 

Suffer no more halibut mood swings!  We are now adding halibut to the list of beautiful farm raised fish we sell at Kathleen's Catch.  Halvard Leroy, the same people who farm our fabulous steelhead trout, are farming some beautiful halibut.    And at  $29.99/lb you can enjoy halibut year round.  This is a picture  we took of some of the halibut we are getting. Granted we are not photographers, but truly,  I've never seen halibut so pretty!

Stone Crab Claws
Nothing says Christmas in the south like stone crabs. Unlike many other crab species, stone crabs do not burrow, but rather hide among rocks or in sea grass beds.  They feed on small mollusks like oysters and other crustaceans. This week we are expecting to receive mediums (5-8 per lb), large (3-5 per lb), and jumbo (2-3 per lb) and maybe even a few colossal (under 2 per lb) and megas (9-14 oz per claw or larger) by the weekend. These huge claws are some of the most impressive we have ever seen!   It's Christmas! Let's celebrate! 

Fresh King Crab Legs
Came in from Dutch Harbor, Alaska last night and will be arriving in Johns Creek this afternoon!  You haven't had crab until you have eaten fresh king crab.

Woohoo Walleye!
Walleye from the Great Lakes - here in Johns Creek on Friday - $23.25/lb.  

We have ten caviar options for this holiday season. A few of our favorites include:

UGA Ossetra Baeri.  ($80.00) This beautiful caviar is packaged in a 30 gram jar with the UGA emblem on the lid. It is sustainably raised in North Georgia by the University of Georgia Forestry Department. It has a very unique nutty flavor and ranges in color from golden to dark brown. 
American Hackleback ($36.75) comes in a 1 ounce jar. This American sturgeon roe is grey to black with a firm texture and mild, subtle flavor.

Trout Caviar ($16.25) and Smoked Trout Caviar ($25.45) are available in 2 ounce jars.This pristine caviar has a mild and delicate taste similar in flavor to salmon roe. The smoked option is slightly seasoned with sea salt and smoked using apple and cherry wood.

Caviar is best served as simply as possible, the food and drink that accompanies it should be slightly bland to never overwhelm or distract from it. Caviar goes further when served as an appetizer. Here are a few appetizer serving suggestions.

Toasted Brioche Rounds with Creme Fraiche and Caviar

1 one-pound loaf brioche, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 eight-ounce container creme fraiche or sour cream
2 ounces caviar, or more

1. Using a 1 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut 36 rounds of brioche from slices. Place 1
tablespoon butter in a 12-inch skillet. Melt over medium heat. Add half the rounds; cook
until golden, turning once, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Repeat with remaining butter and
rounds. Let cool on a wire rack or paper towel. Store rounds in an airtight container at
room temperature for up to 2 days.

2. Place a dollop of creme fraiche on each round, and top with caviar.

Caviar Egg Dip

8 Hard boiled egg
3 ounces creme fraiche or chive cream cheese
Salt and pepper
Dry mustard
1 jar of caviar
Sour cream

Drain caviar well. Hard boil the eggs and chill.
Chop eggs and mix with chive cream cheese and season to taste

Place mixture in bottom of bowl you are going to serve it in. 
On top of egg layer, spread 1/2-inch thick layer of sour cream. Over sour cream, spread a well drained jar of caviar. 
Place in refrigerator overnight or for a few hours.

Marchetti International
Join us Saturday from 3:00 to 6:00 to sample some of these amazing balsamics and olive oils.  They make great gifts for the foodie in your life.

Cioppino kits

We are making cioppino kits to help you with your Feast of Seven Fishes.  
For $59.99 you get:
6 cups fish stock
1 dozen clams
1 lb mussels
1 lb shrimp
1.5 lb cod or salmon

For $13.99 add 1 lb 10/20 calico scallops
For $26.99 add 1 lb regular lump crab meat

Gift Baskets

Looking for the perfect gift for the seafood lover in your family? Well, we've got you covered! We have put together a couple different varieties of gift baskets for you to choose from:

- The Grill Basket includes: 2 alder wood planks, lemon bags, Kathleen's Catch Seafood seasoning, Rub With Love Seafood Rub and Rub With Love Salmon Rub for $39.99.

- The Italian Basket includes: Vigo linguine, Arborio rice, Kathleen's Catch Tuscan Smoke Herb Blend seasoning, Robert Rothschild Garlic Caper Picatta sauce, and mini Marchetti olive oil and balsamic vinegar for $39.99.

- The Sushi Basket includes: Sushi Chef panko, sushi rice, pickled ginger, wasabi powder, nori, and white sesame seeds, organic soy sauce and a sushi rolling mat for $39.99.

- The Fish Fry Basket includes: Zatarain's Fish Fri (original and seasoned), Kathleen's Catch Cajun seasoning, Old Bay, Red Robot hot sauce, and Kelchner's tartar sauce for $29.99.

Each gift basket includes a $10.00 gift certificate to Kathleen's Catch.

Fresh Shrimp
Fresh shrimp coming this weekend from Brunswick, GA.

Special Orders
We are taking special orders for all kinds of holiday treats.  Live lobsters and lobster tails, cioppino kits, fish, shrimp, caviar, scallops, jars of oysters for chowder, snow crab cocktail claws, all kinds of platters, soups, Surf and Turf dinners, king crab legs, stone crab and lots more!

Have you placed your order yet?

This Week's Special
Yellowfin Tuna - $7.25 per six ounce portion.  It looks like this:

Not too shabby, eh?

And Finally,
I'm probably not going to get a chance to write any more before the holiday crunch really gets going.  Did you know that Christmas Eve is actually our busiest day of the year?  I'm going to send out my Christmas card a little later in the day but I wanted to be sure, before I get too distracted by work, that I tell you from the bottom of my heart how much I appreciate your friendship and your business.  And even if you don't celebrate Christmas or you don't celebrate it the same way I do, I hope it's okay for me to send you my very best wishes for a peaceful and joyful season.  There is so much turmoil in the world.  Let's all wish and pray for peace on earth.  We could start something really good right here in Johns Creek.


Thursday, December 11, 2014

Pups, Platters and the Feast of Seven Fishes

Dear Fish Friends,

Happy Holidays!!!  I  know you, like me, are scratching your head that it is already mid-December!   I am very blessed to see my grandchildren every day; but sometimes I stop to look at them and think, "When did they get so big?"

A new way to gauge the passage of time at our house is to watch this guy grow.

He's my new pup and the very best Christmas gift I ever got for myself!   A mixed breed rescue; his mom, believe it or not, was a shih tzu so his daddy must have been a border collie.  He already had a name when we got him and I guess we could have changed it to something we might have liked better.  But when a fishmonger adopts a dog named Nemo, well, you just have to go with it.

Fin Mail
From  Facebook friends:

The lobster rolls, shrimp, oyster stew and corn crab chowder are D-lecious! Thanks so much, Kathleen! This seafood market has got to be Atlanta's best kept secret. Everything looked so fresh! We will be back for sure!

Jon Anderson

From email friends:

Hi Kathleen + Crew!

I HAVE to have your recipe for the salmon quinoa cakes -- they sound (and look) AMAZING! What will it take for you to share the recipe (I imagine it is Sara I need to bribe??) If not Sara, tell me who I need to butter up!

Love y'all,

Amanda Gustin

Party Planning

Have you ordered your party tray yet?
Smoked Salmon Platters

Shrimp Trays

Hot Smoked Seafood 

Christmas Eve Feast!
The Feast of Seven Fishes is an Italian Catholic tradition.  Many Catholics abstain from meat on Christmas Eve, as they do on many other days throughout the year.  Now, before you object to the next comment, let me say that I am a Catholic and have done my share of abstaining from meat on Fridays during Lent.  It's a period of repentance and you are supposed to sacrifice.  What strikes me as a bit ironic is calling a seafood meal a sacrifice!  In fact, the Feast of Seven Fishes is the opportunity to indulge yourself in seafood!   The idea is to eat seven different sea foods in your meal on Christmas Eve.  Why seven?  No one knows for sure why but a few suggestions are  that seven is the most repeated number in the Bible and appears more than 700 times. Seven also is the number representing completion, or it could involve the creation story, the seven Sacraments of the Roman Catholic Church, the seven hills of Rome, even the seven deadly sins! The number seven is also the number of perfection which, we can all agree, is a Feast of 7 Fishes.

Coming up with 7 seafood items for one meal is not very difficult.

1.    How about a seafood appetizer? You could pick from crab artichoke dip served with  goldfish crackers (this could count as two seafood servings) or a shrimp cocktail or a serving of snow crab cocktail claws with cocktail sauce.

2.    For a salad - fresh lobster meat or Kathleen's Catch lobster salad over mixed greens

3.     Kathleen's Catch fresh crab cakes

4.    Cod bouillabaisse

5.    Cioppino with mussels, clams and shrimp

6.     Brown Sugar Chili Cured Salmon by Jim Malaby from Blue Plate Restaurant in Mullica Hill, New Jersey

6, 6 ounce cut salmon filets
2-2 1/2 fingerling potatoes (boiled in well salted water, then chilled)
1 ounce chives (chopped)
6 ounces extra virgin olive oil

Brown Sugar-Chili Cure
2 teaspoon paprika
4 teaspoon cumin seed
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons oregano
4 teaspoons garlic powder
½ cup light brown sugar
¼ cup kosher salt

Take all the ingredients for the Brown Sugar Cure and mix them together.

Using the Brown Sugar Cure, dust each salmon filet, coating them totally, set aside for 20 minutes

While salmon is resting, add chives and olive oil to blender. Puree smooth, set aside.

Taking the palm of your hand, smash each fingerling potato. In a deep skillet with ½ of canola oil heated to medium heat, fry potatoes till golden crispy brown. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper.

In additional skillet with 2 tablespoons of canola at medium heat, add salmon filets. Cook until a rich golden red color then turn over and cook additional 4-6 minutes to desire doneness.

Serve with crispy fingerling potatoes and chive oil.

7.  And for dessert?   Swedish fish of course.

Cioppino Kit for 6
To make the Seven Fishes easy for you, for the holidays we are offering a cioppino kit for 6.

6 cups fish stock
1 dozen clams
1 lb mussels
1 lb shrimp
1.5 lb either cod or salmon

Add 1 lb regular lump crab meat - $26.99
Add 1 lb calico scallops - $13.99

This Week's Special
West Coast Dover Sole - $9.59/lb.  Because West Coast Dover sole is a flounder, it works great in any flounder recipe.

This recipe is especially easy if you just buy our awesome remoulade sauce instead of making your own.

In the Discount Freezer
As you know, if fish stays in our case for two days it gets vacuum sealed, frozen and sold at a 20% discount.  Stock up for the busy days surrounding the holidays.  And if you need help cooking frozen fish, check out the rack of recipes next to the discount freezer.  You will find many ways to cook fish from its frozen state.

This week we have swordfish, tuna, snapper, salmon, hamachi, steelhead, Hawaiian garlic salmon, Arctic char, amberjack, monkfish, wahoo, wreckfish, pollack, cod, haddock, hake, drum, opah, branzino, tilefish, triggerfish, sheephead, flounder, rainbow trout, corvina, catfish, cobia, rockfish, kampachi, black bass, barramundi, mahi, and striped bass.

This Week's Catch to Go
You know we are serving Catch to Go every day now, right?  We change the meal every week - this week we are offering

Marinated Shrimp Skewers
Over Orange Parsley Rice
Parmesan Caesar Glazed Dover Sole
with Baked Squash and Zucchini

And Finally,
Sometimes life spins so fast we can hardly keep our feet on the ground.  I, for one, have to make conscious decisions to slow down and focus.  This week I promise myself that I will take the new pup for a walk every day, I will read one book a day to the kids and read 30 minutes a day to me, and I will limit myself to three cups of coffee a day (yes, limit myself to 3!).  Exercise my body, my heart, my brain and my self-control.  Sounds like a recipe for a good week.  How about you?


P. S.  There is a little place to make comments on my blog entries.  I'd love to hear what you think.  Start a conversation!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Salmon Quinoa Cakes, Mahi Special and Fireworks Mistakes

Dear Fish Friends,

Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are now enjoying lots of fresh fish this week as a way to compensate for all the mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie you ate last week.

Fin Mail

Catch customers have been on the road again! Here's a picture of a French fish market - taken by Adam Feinberg while he and his wife, Faith, were traveling in Paris. This fish shop is on a famous street known as the Rue Claire which also has bakeries, cheese shops and a cafe on every corner.

Thanks, Adam, for sending me your pictures.  Now I know what a poissonnerie looks like!

And this from Hank Shea:

Something New-- Salmon Quinoa Cakes!

These 4-ounce cakes are made with wild-caught keta and sockeye salmon and instead of breadcrumb binder, these are held together with healthy quinoa! Full of the flavors of kale, red peppers and roasted corn, these are easy to prepare. Just saute in butter or oil for 3 minutes on each side or bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes. Try them on top of salads or as a sandwich or wrap.

Party Trays!!

This is a party tray we created for a Thanksgiving gathering this year. It's made with beautifully seasoned domestic shrimp (not Asian tiger shrimp), fresh Maine lobster meat, snow crab claws, hickory roasted salmon and hackleback caviar over chopped egg and creme fraiche. Can you imagine something like this on the table at your next holiday feast?

We have lots of other ideas for party trays. Give us a call and let's talk about the best one for your holiday gathering.

Have You Tasted Our Tuna Salad?

Why is our tuna salad the very best? Canned tuna is made from all kinds of tuna - "chunk light" tuna can be yellowfin, bigeye or skipjack. Canned "solid white" tuna is albacore. The big difference between my tuna salad and canned tuna is that we make it from our prime cut yellowfin tuna meat. Typical canned tuna is made from cuts of fish that include the bloodline and most of the rest of the fish, sometimes including ground-up bone. By the way, this is the reason canned tuna has a higher concentration of mercury. Mercury levels are higher in the bloodline of the fish because that's the filtering part of the fish (like the liver in mammals).

Think of it this way, comparing our tuna to most canned tuna is like comparing filet mignon to hotdogs.

Sing to the music of the Oscar Mayer weiner song...

Oh I am glad I'm not a Gold Kist Tuna.
That is what I'd never want to be
Cause if I were a Gold Kist tuna
No one would be in love with me. 

(like they are with Kathleen's Catch tuna salad)

Catch to Go

Long day at work? How does a gourmet meal requiring little-to-no effort sound? Our Catch To Go meals are perfect for those days when you don't have time to plan a meal or just plain don't want to. All you have to do is preheat the oven, open a bottle of wine, transfer the prepared meal from the foil container to your own dinner plate (or not if you don't want any dirty dishes), and enjoy! Fast, easy and delicious. This week's selections are:

Honey Jalapeno Salmon over Black Bean and Corn Salad (one of our best sellers)
Swordfish Skewers Over Rice Medley (exceptionally delicious)

This Week's Special

Starting today we will have 6 oz. Mahi portions on special for $7.99.  Try brushing the mahi with olive oil, rubbing our blackened seasoning on it, and baking it at 450 degrees for 10 minutes per inch of thickness. The high temperature will make the outside of the fillets crispy without burning it. Serve the fish over warm corn tortillas with chopped onion and fresh cilantro. You can thank us later.

In the Discount Freezer

As most of you already know, the fish in our display cases have (with a few exceptions) never been frozen. This allows us to vacuum seal and freeze the fish that doesn't sell after a few days, and mark it down 20%. If you love to stock your freezer at home with our frozen fish, but hate to dig through the mess that was our discount freezer, you are in luck! Thanks to two of our wonderful customers/closest friends, Janice Howard and Celeste Gravois, we have a new freezer! It is much easier to sort through, so stop by a pick up some frozen fish today.

We have:

Verlasso salmon, red grouper, arctic char, amberjack, monkfish, wahoo, wreckfish, pollack, cod, haddock, hake, flounder, opah, bronzino, tilefish, triggerfish, tuna, swordfish, rainbow trout, corvina, red snapper, catfish, cobia, rockfish, kampachi, black bass, barramundi, mahi, striped bass and Buy 1 Get 1 Free bags of smelts.

And Finally

Think of this as a public service announcement.

I use the fact that I am a very busy person to excuse myself for every absentminded thing I do. Especially at Christmas.

Every year I do my best to fill the stockings on the mantle with unusual things. Last year I had a great idea! Fireworks for New Year's Eve celebrations and cute little chocolates filled the stockings. I was pleased. It was going to be a nice surprise.

It was a cozy Christmas morning as we gathered in front of the fire to open the gifts. I just love the look on everyone's face as they open presents I have lovingly picked out especially for them. I just love the look on their faces as they take down their stockings to remove the clever little gifts I put inside. I just love the look on their face as they stare... with horror!!!???!!! into their stockings and remove very hot (soon to be ignited) fireworks and melted chocolate.


Be safe this holiday season.