Sea Devil

03 Dec
Sea Devil or Monkfish

Sea Devil or Monkfish

So what to cook this weekend? Something tasty but light and with fish came the response from the person on a diet in this household. Which is not me because of my continued extreme sports. Ha!

And just 30 or so hours ago I saw my weekend disappearing (read: no cooking, not enough free time) down the long black hole of “client presentation next week and yes, you are going even if you don’t want to so get the hell ready.” But miracles happen, even if my company was not as happy with this particular miracle as I was at the end of the day yesterday. (Meeting cancelled last minute, no need to pull together 20-minute talk and 40 minute discussion guide over the weekend).

Reason enough to celebrate and enjoy the cold but not toe-curling, ass-freezing (when running) weather we have here this weekend. So got through my onerous run this morning without freezing my butt off, took a nice long hot shower, got dressed and then skedaddled over to Marienplatz to buy some really really fresh fish.

On the way had to admire the teeny tiny Christmas trees they are selling at Odeonsplatz for 10 euros. I guess I would never buy a Christmas tree for many reasons, but still, they are a beautiful tradition and smell so good. The whole city is sort of infused with the scent of pine and spiced wine for a month.

Mini Christmas Trees

Mini Christmas Trees

Wove my way through the crowds of Italians and Dutch tourists hanging out eating spicy German sausages and getting sloshed on Feuerzangbowle drinks (hard liqueur dumped into wine and lit on fire before being served up to you steaming hot at the Christmas markets) over to the place I get fish. And bought what I have since learned I should not have: SEA DEVIL. Funny. Otherwise known as “monkfish” in English, in German the very same creature is a fiery “sea devil.” I’d seen a recipe for Spanish paella, which I love, with fish and lots of green peppers and onions and thought it would be a nice change from my super huge disappointment last night at our company pre-Christmas party where Bavarian food was served. And which I can barely look at after a decade of living here. REALLY? DO WE REALLY NEED TO EAT THIS STUFF? Anyway…

Recipe turned out beautifully – quite similar to make in many ways to an Italian risotto. I put in the monkfish, a handful of shrimp and a couple handfuls of venus clams (these guys were still squirming as they got dumped into the hot rice. Sorry guys :-(). It hit the spot and was pleasing without being too rich. Nice comfort food on a cool winter day. Recipe from one of my cookbooks, “Moro” that my sister recommended but from which I have not made so many things yet. Oh, btw, no more monkfish for me – they won’t even sell it in Berkeley I was told this evening just before the monkfish went into the paella, because it is endangered. 😦 Hoping that the herring I bought as well today for breakfast tomorrow is not on that list…

Monkfish and Saffron Paella

Monkfish and Saffron Paella

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Posted by on December 3, 2011 in Cooking at home


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