Happy Holidays!

Maritime Musings
Every time a this bell rings an angel gets a beer!

Every time  this bell rings an angel gets a beer!

Whichever deity you fear enough to celebrate, on this day…

May you have walls for the wind

And a roof for the rain,

And drinks bedside the fire,

Laughter to cheer you,

And those you love near you,

And all that your heart may desire.

Best wishes and safe return to all in the New Year.

It's the most wonderful time of the year.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

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Jackie vs The Cabezon

Galley Gastronomy
The Cabezon, Scorpaenichthys marmoratus

The Cabezon, Scorpaenichthys marmoratus

Dennis & Annette from down the dock gifted us a Cabezon for dinner last night. We had never really seen one up close, much less eaten one! It certainly had that “Creature From the Black Lagoon” look to it. A toad head with a sculpin body. I was reticent that this thing might taste just like it looks…GROSS! Dennis must have sensed my prejudice, and told us that the bulk of the Cabezon diet is crab; thusly imparting a hint of yummy-crab-flavor into the Cabezon. It MUST be good! However, before we could brave to eat it, we(read Jackie) had to clean it.

Dennis gives Jackie a tutorial on fish gutting.

Dennis gives Jackie a tutorial on fish gutting.

The cabezon is a scaleless fish common to the Pacific Northwest. At first glance you’d think you might be impaled by it spiny outcroppings but it’s as harmless to pick up as a rubber chicken, and quite similar to the touch. Really, it’s like a wet rubber chicken. Jackie picked it up, still fighting for its life, and made quick work of removing its guts and hosing it out. Even without guts, the ugly bastard kept trying to flop back in the water mere inches away. A real tough guy!

A little lime, little garlic and some EVOO.

A little lime, little garlic and some EVOO.

We hadn’t planned for such a bounty so Jackie used what we had on hand. Fresh lime, minced garlic and extra virgin olive oil went into the carcass to season him up….still fighting the good fight. She drizzled him with some more EVOO and wrapped him up in foil. I put him atop his funeral pyre – our trusty grill! He stopped moving right about then. We said a few kind words of remembrance and thanked him for his sacrifice. Twenty minutes later on medium-high flame and we had ourselves some dinner…

Cabezon ala Jacqueline

Cabezon ala Jacqueline

Delicious! Don’t let the lack of presentation fool you. Take a look at that oh-so-tender, light, and flaky meat. It’s no wonder they call this thing “poor man’s lobster.” Still, at nearly $25/lb at the market poor men have to catch it themselves. It goes to show that ugly-loooking monster fish can be pretty yummy. Anybody eat a Coelacanth? Let’s do this!