Four months ago we brought you a book entirely dedicated to meats. Today, we decided to change things a little and bring you a book entirely dedicated to fish. So, without further ado, let's start The Whole Fish Cookbook Review.
In The Whole Fish Cookbook, groundbreaking seafood chef Josh Niland reveals a completely new way to think about all aspects of fish cookery. From sourcing and butchering to dry aging and curing, it challenges everything we thought we knew about the subject and invites you to see fish for what it really is - an amazing, complex source of protein that can and should be treated with exactly the same nose-to-tail reverence as meat.
We all want to eat more fish, but who wants to bother spending the time, effort, and money cooking that same old salmon fillet on repeat when you could be trying something new and delicious? While we are aware of the valuable health benefits, fish is the one protein most of us cook very little of.
In his first book, The Whole Fish Cookbook, Josh wants to change that, bringing us new ways to cook, eat, and think about fish. In this book, you'll discover an entirely new way of looking at fish. Featuring more than 60 recipes for dozens of fish species, ranging from cod liver pate on toast to roast fishbone marrow, this cookbook will soon have readers seeing there is so much more to fish than just the fillet.
Josh suggests an entire new way of thinking about how we process fish with far more consideration given to elements that would traditionally be considered ‘waste’. Understanding the different parts of a fish and the methods of fish cookery lead to treating this complex source of protein with the same nose-to-tail reverence as meat.
Throughout this book, you'll find a lot of texts besides the recipes including a foreword from Australian food writer Pat Nourse, and articles covering topics such as the reasons why we don’t currently cook more fish at home, sourcing fish, storing and dry-aging fish, fish butchery and treating fish in the same way as meat, curing fish, using fish offal and ‘fishues’ i.e. issues with fish.
Finding some of the ingredients in this book could be difficult unless you live in Australia or elsewhere in the Southern Hemisphere, getting all of the varieties of fish specified in some of the recipes will be impossible. However, Josh provides plenty of alternatives but you will definitely need an excellent fishmonger if you are going to cook from the book, supermarket quality fish just isn’t going to cut it.
Although some ingredients are difficult to find we have been using this book a lot. Instead of focusing on the recipes, we have been using some of the techniques that Josh uses at Saint Peter Restaurant. But this doesn't mean that we haven't tried some of the recipes in this book. In fact, we love some of them like Saint Peter's Fish Soup, Swordfish Bacon & Egg English Muffin, and Fish & Chips.
Besides all the great techniques and delicious recipes, the book also has astonishing photographs taken by Rob Palmer including the stunning portrait of Josh (image above) that gave Rob the first place on the Australian National Photographic Portrait in 2020.
The Whole Fish Cookbook offers an original and unusual approach to fish that works like a reflection of a well thought and fully rounded culinary philosophy that gives a new perspective on preparing and cooking seafood. For professional chefs and passionate home cooks that love seafood, this book will be a real eye-opener and will provide some absorbing and challenging weekend culinary projects.
The Whole Fish Cookbook is a fantastic cookbook that will show you a new and revolutionary way to look at seafood. As we already said this book is a must-have for all professional chefs and passionate home cooks that want to know more about seafood.