It’s going to be a fun weekend here at Take Back Your Kitchen, as we are celebrating my new job (hurrah!) that starts next week in the best way we know how: with great food. That said, I feel a little dirty writing this, as while we bought fish as part of said celebration…we didn’t buy them from our normal awesome fishmonger at Stop & Shop. Don’t mistake me–we’ll be back at the counter next week, but Michael had a hankering for some whole fish, and S&S does not have the widest selection of whole fish available. So we finally made our way to #1 Fish Market to check out their selection.
It’s not my first experience with a real fish market–growing up, Christmastime always meant getting delicious shrimp from Hill’s Seafood, and when a location opened not too far from my parents’ home, I would be charged with navigating the crowds to pick up our order while my dad fought wtih the other frazzled customers out in the parking lot (the chaos was to the point that the local police department would be stationed there to direct traffic). It was huge and completely overwhelming, especially teeming with impatient customers. #1 Fish Market is significantly smaller–maybe ten people can stand, single-file, between the lobster tanks and the counter–but it allows you to really examine the fish you’re thinking of purchasing.
The store turns 29 on May 1st, and it’s clear that it has a solid reputation among those who are serious about seafood–the entire staff is friendly and knows how to offer good recommendations based on how you want to prepare the fish, and the selection of fillets, shellfish, shrimp, and whole fish is nothing short of exotic. From monkfish to red snapper to the most beautiful dry scallops I’ve ever seen, everything is extremely fresh and utterly tempting.
Of course, this level of quality has its price, and the fillets especially range in price from $10 to $25 a pound, but it’s very possible to get a great value as well. Though not quite like 1-euro-a-pound sardines, the two dressed Atlantic croakers we purchased for dinner tonight came in at $5.23 ($2.99/lb)–not bad at all!
Next step: cooking the whole fish. Stay tuned…