Shopping and cooking seasonally and locally is SOOOO easy in August, especially on Long Island, with so many farms and major commercial fishing ports as well as local food processors and, now, candy makers making wonderful artisanal treats.
Last night we had our friends, Steve Schiller and Beth O'Brien, and their daughter over for dinner.
- Grilled Local Swordfish and "Swimming" Rare Tuna Steaks --- served with soy sauce, wasabi and pickled ginger
- Creamless Cream Corn (Thomas Colicchio's 5-star - my rating-- recipe on Epicurious)
- Kohlrabi and Carrot Slaw with a traditional "coleslaw" dressing
- Fresh baked pies (apple and peach) served with Ronnybrook Dairy Farm Vanilla Ice Cream and my homemade Peach and Raspberry with Chardonnay Jelly Compote (see recipe for Baked Peaches and Wine Jelly and substitute one pint of raspberries for one peach and Paumanok Preserves "Simply the Best of Long Island" Duck Walk Vineyards Pomegranate-Chardonnay Wine Jelly
It was a beautiful day on the East End and I did my shopping at the Westhampton Farmers Market, where I picked up jellies and jams, corn, tomatoes, raspberries, kohlrabi, orange, white and purple carrots and some FAT ASS FUDGE - a new line of products, some made with goat's milk, that's handcrafted in East Hampton (the dark chocolate is extraordinary - Camille and I snarfed down five generous pieces in no time -- sorry, NONE for our guests!).
Afterwards, I also stopped by the Arts Fair just down Mill Street to see our friend, Annie Sessler of East End Fish Prints, who was showing her beautiful and organic "fish rubbings" (two years ago, I was quoted in this New York Times article "First a Hook, Then Ink: An Artists Catch" by Brett Martin because Henry and I collect Annie's work).
On my way home, I zipped into Brewsters Seafood for some tuna and swordfish steaks. For many year's I avoided swordfish because they had been overfished -- thankfully now that is no longer a problem in the Northeast.
About the Seafood: Swordfish
Latin Gladius = sword -- think Russell Crowe in the movie Gladiator
Several million pounds of fish, including swordfish, are caught out of New York and Long Island's two main ports: Shinnecock and Montauk -- the proximity of the large New York markets and restaurant scene keep this a thriving and important business for the East End.
According to the New York Seafood Council, which recommends a diet that includes eating fish at least twice a week, Swordfish is high in protein and low in fat with 130 calories per 3 ounce serving. Thanks to many restaurants and consumers curbing their consumption some years ago, local swordfish are back and abundant in the New York area (typically they are found about 90 miles east of Montauk point and either line caught or harpooned). Swordfish live in deep waters and can grow up to over 500 pounds.
Read Monteray Aquarium's Seafood Watch Report to learn about what fish are best to eat and best to avoid. Swordfish is now on their "best" list.
(Note: Swordfish should be eaten in moderation due to the potential mercury content -- pregnant women and children should not eat swordfish).