I’m writing for a new website called www.fishonfriday.org.uk It’s brilliantly informative about all things fish, with recipes, techniques, and buckets of information about sustainability.

This month I’m looking at Hake, asparagus, strawberries, May pole punch, and al fresco dining with a recipe for drunken prawn ceviche.

It’s hot enough to sunbathe, gardens are blooming and the evenings are long: perfect for al fresco cocktails and dining late into the night. All this, and the month begins with a holiday too: May Day, a festival that celebrates fertility in all its forms, from the soil to the sea.

Underscoring the arrival of summer, May marks the beginning of the season for strawberries – a versatile fruit that can do much more than just be served with cream. Try mixing with red onion, lemon and black pepper for a great salsa: delicious served with cold seafood, prawns, squid and mussels or wrapped inside a fish taco.

Strawberries are a vital ingredient in a May Pole Punch too. Here’s how to make enough for four. Mix two glasses of white wine with a spoon of honey and a slosh of brandy. Add a few sprigs of sweet woodruff (a common weed that has a natural sweetness and smells of fresh cut hay and vanilla), or add a smidgen of vanilla essence. Add two glasses of sparkling wine or carbonated water and stir. Fill four glasses with ice, a few halves of strawberries and some edible flowers – nasturtiums, marigolds or even dandelions will do. Then top with the punch.

The start of summer’s abundance is also reflected in the wealth of seafood available, including Atlantic cod, flounder, pouting, hake and pollock. Pouting is a by-catch and rarely sought after, therefore very affordable and a great sustainable choice. Its flesh is a little soft, so firm it up by salting it lightly for 15 minutes before roasting. Hake is also a good choice with healthy, well-monitored stocks (in fact, it was recently named the UK’s most sustainable fish: more on this next week). Try grilling hake steaks on the barbecue with rosemary and salt: very yummy indeed.

A lot of fish are still spawning at this time of year (dab, Dover sole, grey gurnard, lemon sole, mackerel, sardines, red mullet and sea bass). Although fish are plump and the quality generally high, it’s best to avoid fish caught during their spawning season, to allow them to multiply.

Prawns

For my recipe this month, I’ve gone for cold-water prawns, or shrimps, as the feature ingredient in a ceviche: Peru’s national dish. Ceviche is normally made with raw fish or shellfish, which has been marinated in lime juice – an alternative to cooking, which turns the flesh firm and opaque, while keeping its flavours fresh and adding a citrus zing too. Although cold-water prawns are sold cooked, they work just as well and keep longer too: “raw” ceviche really has to be made with absolutely fresh seafood.

A reliably sustainable choice that’s available all year round, North Atlantic prawns still somehow come into their own in the sunshine. Buy prawns with the shell on: they have so much more flavour. If you buy them frozen, make sure you allow time for them to defrost: break them apart, and they’ll be ready in no time. Running them under cold water loses all their flavour, washing it down the sink. Make sure you keep the heads and shells for a quick yet divine stock (see recipe below), which you can freeze until you need it.

As an extra seasonal touch, I’ve added asparagus to the ceviche. The season for this highly desirable spring vegetable and well-known aphrodisiac is now in full swing, so the price has dropped a little, making it more affordable. Its delicate and sublime flavours make it a perfect accompaniment to fish, and steaming is a great way to cook both, leaving their flavours intact. Steam a 180g fillet of line-line caught pollock per person for five minutes before adding some asparagus to the same pot and finishing them off together for three more minutes. Serve simply, doused in a good extra virgin olive oil with a wedge of lemon, and some buttery new potatoes on the side.

prawn ceviche with asparagus and radishes

Drunken prawn ceviche with asparagus and radishes

Ceviche is exhilaratingly fresh, perfect for lazy, sunny days, with a beer in hand. Drenched in lime and spiced with fresh chillies, it will sock you with a sour twang and flaming heat, awakening your tastebuds to a real culinary sensation. Ceviche is made widely across Latin America. Fishmongers preserve their fish in this way in big jars, allowing for another day’s sale at the market, a practice that has been going since ancient Incan times.

For the recipe please go to www.fishonfriday.org.uk

PREP TIME

COOK TIME

SERVES

Ingredients

Directions

Share

Twitter
Facebook
Email

Discover more recipes

Salad on a Stick

This dish is inspired by a Basque Pintxos recipe called Gilda. A Gilda usually consists of an olive, anchovy and pepper skewered onto a toothpick.…
Regenerative agriculture

Regenerative agriculture

Regenerative agriculture is an ideology and farming practice based on many years of scientific research and agroecological farming practices such as organic, biodynamic and permaculture.…
Waste Not Chocolate

Waste Not… Chocolate

Over the last ten years all my work in food, writing, cooking and teaching has had a clear environmental focus. This passion for climate-friendly cuisine…
Biodiversity

Biodiversity

“Biodiversity” The variety of life (from a single-celled organism or plant to a mammal) within a defined location or system, from the whole world to…
Food Sustainability

Food Sustainability

“Food Sustainability” A holistic approach to food that considers how our nutrition impacts the world around us from an environmental, social and economic perspective which aims…
Waste Not- Lettuce

Waste Not… Lettuce

Salad is a bit like Marmite: you either love it or you hate it. I’m a lover of both, and they even taste good together…
Waste Not Celery

Waste Not… Celery

A bushy head of celery with its leaves intact is quite spectacular and almost twice the size of a regular, chopped bunch from a supermarket.…
Lemons

Waste Not… Lemons

Lemon rinds add flavour to roasts, make a versatile salty preserve and give summer salads a sharp boost. Good lemons are knobbly, juice-filled and can…
Waste Not Cauliflowe

Waste Not… Cauliflower

he once-neglected cauliflower has been lifted to new heights in recent years, and now features regularly on restaurant menus, where it’s treated like a delicacy:…
Waste Not Potato Peelings

Waste Not… Potato Peelings

It’s not surprising that the many people are up in arms about how much food we waste, and potatoes are part of the problem: about…

Autumn / Apricot Frangipane

After incubating the ground over the summer months the sun grows soft and the wind drops a degree in temperature – signalling agriculturalists to prepare…
Chocolate pot with Candied Beetroot

Chocolate pot with Candied Beetroot

CANDIED Beetroot Eat as sweets, decorate cakes or make my super rich chocolate pot. 150g unrefined sugar, 100ml water, 1 medium beetroot (about 200g) Wash…
Chocolate salted rye cookies

Chocolate salted rye cookies

This recipe is adapted from Chad Robertson’s Tartine book 3. These are the best cookies I’ve ever eaten. Say no more. Ingredients – makes 20 cookies…
Cavolo nero and walnut dip

Cavolo nero and walnut dip

First published in the Guardian – Photographs by Elena heatherwick This is a variation on a pesto recipe that I learnt from a close friend…
Spider Crab Paella

Fish on Friday, Spider Crab Paella

My poly-tunnel and veg patch are now bulging with glorious summer vegetables: bell peppers, aubergines, broad beans, new season beetroot, onions, and garlic. The courgettes…
Watercress-pasta-pesto

Veg Box – Watercress

This post was previously published on www.goodbyesupermarkets.co.uk A wonderful springtime green is Watercress. A powerhouse of vitamins and minerals that should perhaps have been Popeye’s…
Wild Food

Wild Food, foraging in May

This month Absolutely Wild’s Peter Studzinski drops by to give us some great tips about foraging in May. For foraging, May is a transitional month between…
Wild Garlic

Veg Box – Wild Garlic

‘You may occasionally find wild garlic for sale in local farmer’s markets, but they grow abundantly, so why not go out in search of your…
Prawn-ceviche

May – Fish on Friday, Ceviche

I’m writing for a new website called www.fishonfriday.org.uk It’s brilliantly informative about all things fish, with recipes, techniques, and buckets of information about sustainability. This…
Veg Box – Spring onions

Veg Box – Spring onions

Said in the most positive possible way Spring is almost here! Time for salads and fresh foods to awaken us from our Winter slumber. Spring…
Smoke and forage

Smoke and forage

If you enjoy the alchemy and adventure of smoking and foraging for food but have never had the courage to do it, then this is…
Pomegranate Chocolate Brownies

Pomegranate Chocolate Brownies

What food could be more erotic than a super rich chocolate brownie with jewels of pink and a sticky pomegranate molasses. This, for me, is…
Christmas Leftovers – Brussel Colcannon

Christmas Leftovers – Brussel Colcannon

Brussel sprouts aren’t everyone’s favourite vegetable. Maybe thats why they’re neglected, lack the love they deserve and are always overcooked. So it’s no surprise that…
Seasonal Roasties with Chimichurri

Seasonal Roasties with Chimichurri

I’m always surprised by the seasonal variety of veg available in December and January. Theres only a few months where we’re limited to roots and…
Christmas Persimmon Salad

A Fresh Christmas Persimmon Salad

Persimmon, sharon fruit, kaki or even ‘fruit of the gods’ is a unique and delicious fruit that either tastes like a fresh, sweet, fruity date…
Quince Frangipane

Quince Frangipane

Quince is a kind of yellow pear that has a complex flavour. It works well in savoury dishes, most commonly used to make membrillo or…
Celeriac Gratin

Celeriac Gratin with Anchovies

Celeriac gratin was one of my favourite dishes at River Cottage. Hugh’s addition of anchovies is genius. So I guess this recipe is a homage…
3 Pinchos – Canapes

3 Pinchos – Canapes

Pincho literally means ‘spike.’ Normally skewered with a toothpick, it is eaten as tapas in northern Spain. I like my pinchos to be an intense…
Gurnard Parcel with Fennel

Gurnard Parcel with Fennel

Gurnard is a delicious, firm fleshed fish that roasts well and is even good raw as a ceviche. In this recipe we wrap the fish…
Deviled Kidneys

Deviled Kidneys

I love deviled kidneys, there’s no two ways about it. They’re so rich and unctuous, eating this dish makes me feel spoilt, and for very…
Cleo the Friendship Bread

Cleo the Friendship Bread

We at Forgotten Feast have sent our sourdough starter Cleo into the wide world. We were Inspired by Herman the German Cake and also our…
Beetroot Chocolate Cake

Beetroot Chocolate Cake

Beetroot’s earthy sweetness goes incredibly well with bittersweet chocolate. The beetroot lends a complex and wholesome flavour to the cake that helps relieve the guilt…
Cure pork fat at home

Cure pork fat at home

Cured pork fat This recipe takes the ‘No Waste’ ethos to the next level. Lots of people avoid fat for health reasons, but there’s no…
The Life of a Loaf

The Life of a Loaf

7 Ways To Use A Loaf Throughout Its Life Bread is a product that we expect to buy uber fresh. It’s almost seen as our…
Fruits

Devilled kidneys on toast

This was one of my favourite dishes while I was working at River Cottage, me and Ray Smith the house butcher used to fight over…
Mis-fit veg with babaganush

Mis-fit veg with babaganush

Through mass production, a lot of perfectly good veg is wasted. One of the most ludicrous reasons is that a vegetable is superficially ‘ugly’ or…
Brain Food

Brain Food

Surely its the ultimate insult to throw a brain in the bin, it is however a lot of work to remove from the head which…

For more of Tom’s recipes... Check out his new book

Eating
for
Pleasure,
People &
Planet

By TOM HUNT

Tom's manifesto, 'Root to Fruit' demonstrates how we can all become part of the solution, supporting a delicious, biodiverse and regenerative food system, giving us the skills and knowledge to shop, eat and cook sustainably, whilst eating healthier, better-tasting food for no extra cost.

Share

Twitter
Facebook
Email