I’m absolutely thrilled about the new Nunavut wild Arctic Char now available from CleanFish, an active supporter of sustainable seafood. This rare wild find is an amazing fish with an amazing story…
|A proud trio of native fisherman with a fine catch – note the brighter fish, it’s closer to spawning.|
|Manpower, not hydraulics, is used to haul the nets and fish.|
The Nunavut (noon-a-voot) are Inuit people of the northern islands of Canada who have been catching Arctic Char in open boats and traps, by hand for over 2,000 years. These fish are rare, sustainable, delicious, Eco-friendly and only available locally at Tony’s Markets – take pride in your responsible choice that gives these 1,500 hard working people a chance at a sustainable future.
|Way, WAY up north, search Google Maps for “Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, Canada” and check it out in satellite view.|
A Rare Find
|Char look a lot like Dolly Varden, another tasty Northern Tier fish, and are a salmonid; related to Dolly, Salmon, Trout, Steelhead, Grayling and freshwater whitefishes – all very tasty!|
|Looks like salmon, eh? Interesting note – I have the EXACT same cutting board in my kitchen, small world don’t ya know!|
I’m waiting for this fish to come in, I have an extra special (and very simple) recipe in mind and will update this post with it when I can – hopefully before I leave for vacation (fly fishing, of course!). In the mean time, here’s a couple favorite recipes for Arctic Char – Buon Appetito!
Pan seared fillets with bacon and a simple Maple Syrup Butter enhanced with Canadian or Irish Whiskey (I suggest Canadian Rye Whiskey or Irish Tullamore Dew).
|Simple Chile and Citrus Char – also great with Steelhead, trout or salmon – recipe follow.|
Simple Chile and Citrus Char
Nunavut Arctic Char fillets (allow 4-8 oz per person)
Tony’s Chile Arriba! Seasoning, Cajun Seasoning, Carne Asada Seasoning, or Spicy Southwestern Rub (recipe follows)
Fresh orange, lemon and lime zest
Season fillets with Tony’s Chile Arriba!, to taste. Preheat a medium to medium high grill or grill pan on the stovetop. Zest citrus.
Mist hot grill/grill pan or skillet well with oil and immediately add fish fillets, skin side up. Grill to brown lightly – about 3 minutes depending on grill temperature and cooking grate. Turn and cook to medium rare – about 130 degrees internal. Remove from heat, top generously with citrus zest and serve.
Pairing Notes: I paired this dish with Jalapeno Mashed Potatoes, steamed veggies, fresh herbs and a cold glass of sake – but a cold lager beer or a chilled bottle of Rose, Riesling or Gewurztraminer would also be lovely.
Jalapeno Mashed Potatoes Recipe
Supreme Citrus Sauce: For an accompanying citrus sauce, Supreme Cut fruit segments (meat only, no skin or membrane – 2 parts orange to 1 part lemon and lime) and saute in a saucepan with a splash of wine to ‘melt;’ seasoning with pinches of salt and pepper and sweetening with Agave nectar, honey or sugar if desired. Remove from heat and add melt in tabs of butter to taste.
Spicy Southwestern Rub
1 TBS oregano
1 TBS ground ancho chile
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp brown sugar – to taste
1.5 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground chipotle chile
1 tsp granulated garlic
¾ tsp ground black pepper
¾ tsp dry lemon or lime peel / zest
¾ tsp dry orange peel / zest
Blend seasonings well, taste and adjust with more brown sugar or other seasonings to taste. Store leftover seasonings in a tightly sealed container.
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