One of the great things about Cleanfish Australia's seafood market that takes place in Banksmeadow every Saturday morning from 8am-midday is the way it provides you with an opportunity to hear from fishermen, seafood experts and chefs how to get good results using different seafood products at home. Seafood can be expensive, so nobody wants to make a big spend on something unusual, then get it wrong.
Seeing Coorong Cockles popped open on a barbeque by Red Lantern's Mark Jensen then teamed with a beautifully balanced Vietnamese dipping sauce inspired me to try doing the same at home, with excellent results.
In fact, this method edged out our usual (and more complex) regular treatment, by allowing the cockles' sweet, briny flavour to really come to the forefront of the dish.
Business owner Jules Crocker, who has been in the seafood game for over fourteen years, is also a wealth of knowledge.
He's on the warehouse floor each Saturday, encouraging you to experiment with products like fresh uni. Jules telling me uni is best served simply on hot, buttered toast definitely boosted my confidence to take it home for the first time.
The intensity of pure ocean in the uni also meant it stood up well with a pasta application, making a very small amount of the product feed two people across two contrasting courses for under twenty dollars.
Jules also sends out a tempting list of available seafood each week by email (sign up at the website below), as well as information about which star chef he'll have cooking up a storm. Meeting Kerby Craig from Ume in Surry Hills was another highlight, which inspired me to go home with unshucked Sydney rock oysters that I balanced with pickled ginger and a Japanese inspired dressing, as well as tuna I served up as sashimi.
*See a previous visit it Cleanfish Australia back HERE.