Is it just me, or does a meal actually taste better when you know that its components are sustainable and contribute to keeping our oceans healthy? Sometimes the challenges surrounding climate change and problems within the current state of the aquaculture industry can be daunting, but we can empower ourselves as contributors (not consumers!) to make a positive impact through our daily food choices.
As The Marine Mammal Center puts it, “responsible, sustainable fishing and aquaculture are critical to keeping our ocean healthy and ensuring a plentiful fish supply for both marine mammals and humans alike” — I couldn’t have said it better myself!
To put this idea into action, they launched “Seal-Approved,” Ocean-Friendly meals to help families across America learn how we can work together to protect our oceans. These Seal-Approved meals are a wonderful guide to assist you in cooking sustainable seafood at home, and I was honored to contribute and teach this recipe as part of one of their virtual cooking classes last month!
Sometimes trying new recipes and cooking techniques can be intimidating, but I want to assure you that this one is a breeze! I developed it with families in mind, and encourage you to invite your children into the kitchen with you. Teaching them to consider where their food comes from and different cooking techniques in this hands-on way is such a powerful way to set up the next generation for success. Don’t take my word for it — check out the final product that my teenage nieces whipped up below!
For this recipe, I used Pacifico Striped Bass, and I highly recommend you give it a try, too. Pacifico is the only four-star Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) striped bass on the planet! Cooking the fish on the grill imparts a lovely smoky flavor, and is a wonderful way to cook fish as we enter summer grilling season.
If you want less smoky flavor, you can seek out thinner fillets — they will spend less time on the grill as they cook quicker. The homemade chimichurri adds a fresh, acidic flavor that’s fortified with kelp, which is one of my favorite contributive Sea Pantry ingredients to incorporate whenever possible.
Makes 4 Servings
For the Fish
4 Six to Eight ounce skin on Pacifico Striped Bass
4 bunches of cherry tomatoes, stems on
Salt and Pepper
For the Chimichurri
1 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/4 cup kelp puree
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped
1/2 teaspoon chili pepper flakes
2 tablespoons shallot, minced
1 lemon, cut into quarters
To Prepare the Chimichurri:
Chop all of the ingredients lightly by hand, or combine in a blender or food processor.
To Prepare the Fish:
- Preheat the grill to 425°F.
- Season the Pacifico fillet and cherry tomatoes with olive oil, salt, pepper.
- Place the fillet skin-side down on the grill and cook for four minutes or until the fillet is cooked to desired doneness, turning once.
- Add the tomatoes at the last two minutes to lightly char.
- To serve, plate the fillets on individual dishes with the grilled tomato, chimichurri, and lemon wedges.
Want more fresh fish recipes? Try this Provencal Style Cod with Cannellini Beans and Tomato!