Enjoy Your Bounty
We asked Sean Barrett, founder of Dock to Dish, for a few tips on getting the most out of your CSF windfall. Also, check out our tutorial on grilling fish on page 100.
Make sure you have a method for keeping your seafood cold if you’re picking up at the harbor or market, especially in the summer. Dock to Dish used to provide insulated bags and ice packs (these days they homedeliver instead), but you can make do with a cooler. The magic number is 40 degrees: above that, quality declines and pathogens increase.
Plan for it.
“You can keep a striped bass fillet chilled for a week and it’ll be pretty good,” Barrett acknowledges. But why would you want to? Freshness is one of the CSF’S primary selling points, so make sure to mealplan accordingly. “Wine ages well,” Barrett says. “Fish does not.” And keep prep simple. Think: sashimi or a quick sear on the grill.
Be bivalve savvy. Clams, mussels and other in-the-shell bivalves will keep in the fridge for a couple of days if stored properly: place them in a colander set over a bowl and cover with a damp cloth. (Some pros suggest icing the colander, but because bivalves can die if they get too cold, don’t risk it. It’s also important not to seal them in a plastic bag or submerge in water.)
Freeze any excess bounty. Placing the fish or shellfish in a bag and vacuumsealing it before freezing is the best way to go. But you can also use a resealable plastic bag. Just make sure to get as much air out of it as possible. Otherwise, it risks freezer burn, which can affect the flavor and texture of the fish. For best quality, use it within 3 months or so.