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just for the halibut

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Not only is it delicious, but California Halibut is very good for you! It is low in saturated fat and sodium and is a very good source of protein (21g/per 1/2 lb serving), niacin, phosphorus, and selenium. Selenium is a trace mineral that is essential to good health, it is incorporated into proteins to make selenoproteins, which are important antioxidant enzymes. The antioxidant properties of selenoproteins help prevent cellular damage from free radicals. Free radicals are natural by-products of oxygen metabolism that may contribute to the development of chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease. Other selenoproteins help regulate thyroid function and play a role in the immune system.

Just for the halibut?…just for the selenium!

In terms of sustainability with halibut you really need to ASK QUESTIONS! Whether you should buy or order California halibut depends on the fishing methods used: best option is of course hook-and-line caught or even bottom trawl-caught. Try to avoid California halibut caught by gillnets, which frequently catch marine mammals and seabirds. Gillnets account for one quarter of the total California halibut catch. H&H’s halibut is always hook and line caught by our local boys. This fish we have today came to you from Matt Rockhold (Rocky) just yesterday.

Halibut is one of the most versatile fish to cook. It can be baked, broiled, fried, grilled, pan sautéed, and poached. The firm white meat of Halibut fillets and the mild flavor makes this a great fish for any recipe calling for whitefish. The main thing to remember when cooking Halibut is that it will dry out on you fast, because it contains very little oil. So if you are baking, broiling, or grilling it, make sure you have marinated it or brushed it witha little oil or butter to help retain the moisture.  If you are using a marinade choose one that will not over power the delicate flavor of Halibut. Marinades with strong acidic will breakdown the meat, making it become soft or mushy. If you’d like lemon on it, be sure to squeeze it on after you cook it, not before.

Basic cooking techniques for cooking perfect halibut-

Grilling: The low oil content will make it stick to the grill so make sure you start with a clean grill grate and make sure to oil your grate before you start cooking. Apply a generous amount of olive oil, butter or marinade to your steak or fillet. The 10 minute an inch rule applies here. So a 1 inch steak should take about 10 minutes to grill over a medium high heat. Make sure to only turn the fish one time to avoid it falling apart as it is cooking. Thinner steaks or halibut fillets could cook in around 6 minutes.
Baking: Baking halibut is probably the easiest way you will find to cook halibut. Pre-oil a casserole dish (oven safe) with cooking spray. Season your fish and apply a small amount of olive/grapeseed/coconut to the top. In a preheated 400 degree oven, bake for approximately 15 minutes. About halfway through you may want to baste with oil or marinade again to prevent dry-out.
Broiling: Preheat the broiler make sure to coat the broiler pan with some type of oil/cooking spray, also brush the halibut with some type of oil. Place the broiler pan about 3 to 4 inches away from the top and broil for about 10 minutes. We like to turn our halibut after 5 minutes and baste again.
Deep Frying: Halibut makes some great fish and chips. You can use a beer batter, or a seasoned flour mix for deep frying. Cut the halibut into small chunks, not to thin and not to thick. Deep fry at 375 until golden brown. We would also recommend that you get a thermometer for checking the oil temperature of your fry. Some fryers do not maintain the right temperature.
Pan Searing: Pan searing adds a nice crust to the outside of the Halibut. You can cook the Halibut all the way in the pan or you can partial cook it and finish it off in the oven.
For complete searing in the pan. Use a non stick skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over a medium high heat. Add the Halibut and sear for 5 to 7 minutes. Flip the fish and add 2 tablespoons of butter, spoon the butter over the Halibut as they cook for another 5 to 7 minutes. Your time might vary depending on the thickness of the steak or fillet.
Pan searing and finish cooking in the oven. Pre heat your oven to 350 degrees. In a sauté pan that is oven safe heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat, sear steaks or fillets for about 3 minutes on each side. Transfer the pan to the oven and finish cooking for about another 5 to 6 minutes.

Sautéed Halibut with Shaved Fennel Salad

For Salad
1 small fennel bulb, feathery top discarded
2 tablespoon basil olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoon minced shallot
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon(s) freshly ground pepper
1/2 small red onion, very thinly sliced
2 cups baby spinach leaves

For Halibut
2 tablespoon basil olive oil
1 lb halibut fillet
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 teaspoon unsalted butter

Salad: Using a mandolin or V-slicer, cut fennel lengthwise into very thin slices. In a large bowl, whisk oil, vinegar, shallot, salt, and pepper. Scatter onion over dressing, then top with fennel and spinach (do not toss).
Halibut: Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until oil is hot. Season halibut with salt and pepper. Add fillets to skillet; cook until golden brown on first side, about 4 minutes. Turn fillet(s); cook 3 to 4 minutes longer, until barely opaque in center. Remove to a plate. Deglaze skillet with wine and bring to a boil. Reduce by half, then remove from heat and swirl in butter until emulsified. Spoon pan sauce over fillets. Toss fennel salad and serve with halibut.
adapted from

Halibut with Persimmon Tomato and Dill Relish

2 cups diced Persimmon tomato (about 3 medium)
3 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
1 tablespoon finely chopped seeded jalapeño pepper
1 teaspoon chopped fresh dill
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 pound halibut fillet
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive /grapeseed/coconut oil
Cooking spray
Dill sprigs (optional)

Prepare grill. Combine the first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl; stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Toss gently to coat.  Brush fish with oil; sprinkle evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Place fish on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 2 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Serve with tomato mixture; garnish with dill sprigs, if desired.
adapted from Cooking Light Aug, 2008

Chimichurri Halibut Tacos ( <—– these are SO GOOD!)

2 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 tablespoons fresh oregano
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
5 garlic cloves, crushed
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb halibut fillet
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Cooking spray
12 (6-inch) corn tortillas or cabbage leaves!

Place first 5 ingredients in a food processor; process until finely chopped. Slowly pour oil through food chute; process until smooth. Place fish in a shallow dish; rub mixture over fish. Cover and chill 2 hours (optional.)
Preheat grill to high heat. Sprinkle fish with salt and black pepper. Place fish on a grill rack coated with cooking spray, and grill for 4 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Remove from grill. Break fish into chunks. Heat tortillas according to package directions. Divide fish evenly among tortillas/cabbage shells and serve with whatever else you like in there!
adapted from Cooking Light June, 2011

Now go get your HALIBUT on and Enjoy! Thank you!!!

salmon is king

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We are pleased to finally bring you <<drumroll>> FRESH LOCAL King Salmon! They call it “King” for a reason. It is the best of the best…there are 5 different species of North Pacific native salmon (ready…GO! Can you list all 5?) King is considered the best due to its high fat content which = yummy goodness. The fat brings the health benefits, creamy texture, amazing melt-in-your-mouth flavor. (FYI – King/Chinook, Coho/Silver, Sockeye, Pink, and Chum) (pop quiz later…)

So, what’s up with the local salmon season anyways? Well, glad you asked…

As you may recall, just four years ago we saw a collapse in the salmon population which shut down California’s commercial salmon fisheries.  The season was open (if you could even call it that) briefly but with severe restrictions last year. Some say this year we may see the prized Kings perform an amazing comeback.

We’ve been approved the longest commercial salmon fishing season in eight years thanks to huge numbers of the King salmon populations from the Klamath and Sacramento rivers –  CA’s top spawning grounds. This year’s local commercial salmon fishing season began May 1 and will run through Sept. 30 with a few breaks. We’ll do what we can to get it to our farmers’ markets and CSS throughout the season whether caught by Hans or one of our local day boats.

Reportedly, there are 1.65 million adult King salmon in the ocean this year from the Klamath River near the Oregon border, nearly three times higher than any previous estimate since 1985!  Much of this has been attributed the favorable ocean conditions and the wet winters of 2009-2011. Deep, surging rivers enable more young salmon to survive during their journey to the ocean, where they then get to feast on an abundance of plankton that’s been churned to the surface by the coastal upwelling.

This all still brings no guarantees… King salmon populations are on a cycle that can (and has) fluctuate(d) by man-made problems such as pollution from agricultural runoff (as seen in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta,) loss of stream and wetland habitat, and the diversion of water for farming. It has been said that we’ll see salmon suffer for as long as the political battle over California’s water rages.

The salmon fishing in Monterey Bay can be hit or miss, but most fishermen are hitting good amounts of salmon so far. The price is still high but we may see that level out a little bit…it’s always high to start due to demand and uncertain supply.

As far as health – ever try to do a Google search on “the health benefits of eating salmon?” It’s a joke. Pages go on and on. I tried to look up a little something that maybe we hadn’t all heard before but all the information out there is baffling. So let’s stick with the basics… we all know about that magic ‘ingredient’ found in salmon , fish oil that is high in Omega-3s. This fatty acid is not found in other foods. Found in fish, polyunsaturated fatty acid EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), helps the heart and clogged arteries. Salmon, in particular, is loaded with Omega-3s and the American Heart Association has recommended people eat it at least twice per week. You might also try Sardines and Black Cod to kick up the omegas in your diet.  But did you know the health benefits associated with Omega-3s found salmon provide a great source of easily digested protein? The benefits are tremendous for kids, athletes, pregnant and nursing women, and those who are recovering from illnesses. The DHA found in wild King salmon enhances the development of fetal and young brains as well as infant nervous systems.  Did you know that eating wild Salmon provides your body with at least 50% of the vitamin D your body needs in a given day? It’s no joke and the claims are backed up by the American Heart Association, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and World Health Organization. The FDA even permits a claim to be posted on Wild Salmon labeling:  “Supportive but not conclusive research shows that consumption of EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. One serving of Wild King Salmon provides 1.7 grams of EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids.” That’s some king stuff!

It’s hard to go wrong when cooking King salmon. The Coho salmon tends to be a bit leaner and therefore may have a tendency to dry out easier. Kings have a higher fat content which will help prevent this.

Here are some basic salmon cooking techniques:

Baking: Season salmon, then brush with butter/olive oil/grapeseed oil/coconut oil. Place in a baking pan and cook in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for approximately 10 minutes per inch of thickness. Check at the thickest point. Salmon should flake when done.
Steaming: Use a steamer or steaming basket, arrange salmon portions on rack, then pour liquid (wine, water, etc.) over fish into pan. Lightly season salmon and add spices and herbs to water. Cover and bring to a boil. Steam salmon one minute per ounce over medium heat. You can also wrap your fish portions in cheese cloth to remove them from steamer in whole pieces.
Poaching: Assemble poaching liquid of a mix of chicken broth, white wine, water, sake, etc. Add one teaspoon of bouquet garni and bring to simmer. Be sure there is enough liquid to cover fish in a skillet. Poach 6 to 7 minutes. Can serve warm with lemon dill sauce or chill in refrigerator and serve cold.
Pan Frying: The trick with frying is to allow your oil or butter to get hot before frying. This captures the oils and juices and keeps them in the salmon. Do not allow your oil to get too hot and smoke. The basics include rinsing your fish quickly or wiping with a damp cloth. Dip your fillet portions or steaks into milk, then in cracker crumbs or flour. You can season either as well. Your oil should be deep enough to cover 1/2 of the fillet or steak thickness. Fry on medium heat about 3 to 5 minutes on each side, until golden brown.
Broiling: Preheat oven and broiling pan at least 10 minutes beforehand. Brush the top of the salmon with seasonings. You can also coat it with an oil if you like but I never do. Place on broiler rack about 2 to 3 inches from heat. You do not need to turn salmon fillets while they’re broiling. Salmon is finished when thickest part separates easily with a fork. If you’ve used some kind of marinade that is browning too quickly, turn from broiler to bake and finish at about 350 degrees.

Finally, some of our tried and tested favorite healthy salmon recipes… (some old, some new, all delicious.)

Grilled Salmon and Spinach Salad (feeling inspired by this heat and all the delicious citrus fruits ripe right now)

1/4 cup fresh orange juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic blend seasoned rice vinegar (such as Nakano)
1/2 teaspoon mustard (honey or spicy)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 lb salmon fillet
2 teaspoons black pepper
Cooking spray
6-ounces fresh spinach
4 oranges, each peeled and cut into 6 slices

Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.
To prepare vinaigrette, combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl; stir well with a whisk.
To prepare salad, drizzle lemon juice over fillets; sprinkle with 2 teaspoons pepper. Place fillets, skin sides up, on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 5 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Remove skin from fillets; discard (or eat! supper healthy fats in there!)
Add spinach to vinaigrette in bowl; toss well. Place spinach mixture evenly on serving plates; arrange salmon and orange slices on top of greens.
adapted from  Cooking Light July, 2009

Pan-Grilled Salmon with Red Pepper Salsa

2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle chile powder
1 lb salmon fillet
Cooking spray
1 cup prechopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped tomato
2 tablespoons prechopped red onion
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1/8 teaspoon salt

To prepare salmon, heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Combine first 5 ingredients; rub evenly over fillets. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add fillets to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. While fish cooks, prepare salsa. Combine bell pepper and remaining ingredients. Serve salsa with fillet(s).
adapted from Cooking Light August, 2010

Coconut Lime Seared Salmon

1 lb salmon
lemon juice
squeeze lime juice
sea salt and pepper
4 T. organic virgin coconut oil (or olive oil) for frying
dried or fresh dill (to taste)
Coconut Lime Sauce: 1 can organic coconut milk, 1/3 c. lime juice, peel of fresh lime – grated for zest, handful organic no-sulfur shredded coconut (extra for garnish), slices of fresh lime for garnish

Prepare your coconut sauce by combining and stirring all the lime sauce ingredients in a large bowl. Once mixed, poor roughly two-thirds of the glaze and salmon in a leak proof bag and let marinate for at least 30 minutes for the flavors to meld. Coat your grill with olive oil (spray or otherwise). Grill* the salmon for 2-3 minutes per side – we like our salmon rare-medium. We usually start with the flesh side down. Once the salmon is done to your liking, remove it from the grill and drizzle over the remaining coconut lime sauce. Sprinkle the coconut flakes on top and serve hot with a wedge of fresh lime.
*To Broil – place on foil-lined baking sheet and broil for 10-15 minutes. If salmon seems to be getting to cooked on top but not inside, lower heat to 350-400 degrees and bake until finished throughout to your liking.
adapted from

Maple Grilled Salmon  (we LOVE this recipe and it works on the BBQ or under the broiler)

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 lb salmon fillets
cooking spray
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Combine first 3 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag; add fish. Seal and marinate in refrigerator anywhere from 15 minutes to 3 hours. Preheat grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Remove fish from bag, reserving the marinade. Pour marinade into a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Cook until reduced to 2 tablespoons (about 5 minutes). Place fish on grill rack or pan coated with cooking spray; grill 4 minutes on each side starting with flesh side down or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness, basting occasionally with marinade. Remove fish from grill; sprinkle with salt and pepper.
adapted from Cooking Light July, 2008

Honey Soy Grilled / Broiled Salmon
Prepared Grilled or Broiled The natural richness of salmon and its high amount of Omega-3’s makes it a great choice for a healthy meal that doesn’t need much added fat. By stuffing a mixture of fresh herbs into the fillets, through a pocket, the fish is infused with bright flavors. A light glaze during the cooking process is the final touch.

1/4 cup packed cilantro leaves
2 scallions
2 teaspoons oil (olive, grapeseed, coconut – melted)
1 teaspoon grated ginger
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 lb King Salmon
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 teaspoon black sesame seeds
lime wedges, optional garnish

Grilling directions – Preheat the grill over medium-high direct heat. Oil the grill grates. Finely chop the cilantro and scallion and mix in the oil and ginger. Season with salt and pepper. Cut two 3-inch long slits through the skin lengthwise on the bottom of the salmon fillets, going about halfway into the salmon. Evenly stuff the slits with the herb mixture. Season the fish with salt and pepper. Stir together the lime juice, soy and honey until smooth. Place the salmon, skin side up, on the grill* and cook until well marked, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the salmon and continue to cook, brushing the tops with the sauce, until the fish is cooked through, about another 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a serving plate and sprinkle the tops with the sesame seeds. Serve with lime wedges.
Broiling* directionsPosition an oven rack so that a baking sheet set on the rack is about 4-inches below the heat source. Preheat the broiler. Prepare the salmon as above and place the fillets, skin down, on a foil lined baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Broil, basting 3 to 4 times with the sauce, until just cooked through, about 6 to 7 minutes.
adapted from adapted from Television Food Network May 2010

Enjoy! And be sure to show it all off here… we love seeing what you’ve created.
Thank you!