Thursday, March 1, 2012

Seafood at Sunset with SeaBest

Last night I was treated to a wonderful and delicious event called "Seafood At Sunset". The wonderful folks at SeaBest Seafood invited a group of Central Florida bloggers out to sample their seafood, enjoy a cooking demo, and learn more about how easy it is to prepare seafood.
I know all about the wonderful health benefits of eating seafood, however I rarely make it at home.  The SeaBest event gave me a lot more confidence when it comes to cooking seafood at home!

The event took place at UCF's Rosen College of Hospitality.  It's a gorgeous campus, and you may not believe this, but they have a "wine and beer lab" there.  True story.
Beautiful and healthy campus.
Now let's talk about the food! SeaBest is a family run company based in Jacksonville that has been around since 1979.  They are fairly new in terms of their "retail" seafood business.  Their products can be found in Florida at Winn Dixie. 

We enjoyed 2 appetizers and then 3 different entrees that were demonstrated for us by their chef Brian.
The Menu:
Appetizers - Buffalo Shrimp Dip & Scallop Egg Rolls
Entrees - Lemony Rice Fish Cakes, Ahi Tuna Melt, and Walk the Plank Stew.
The buffalo shrimp dip reminded me of the Frank's Red Hot Buffalo Chicken dip that is so popular in our family.  I enjoyed the addition of the shrimp to the dip and it's definitely something I could see myself making again.  
I'm also thinking about the idea of making "baked popcorn buffalo" shrimp.  Recipe to come!

Out of the 3 entrees, the Ahi Tuna Melt was a HUGE favorite of mine!  
I eat plenty of tuna salad...but not like this! Wow! It was like couture tuna salad! Think canned tuna salad x 1000.  The addition of fresh dill was wonderful and the meaty ahi tuna was delicious.  I already know this will be appearing on my lunch table soon.  I also want to add avocado instead of mayo to include more healthy fats.

The Walk The Plank stew was my surprise favorite of the night.  I don't think I've ever had cod before OR a seafood stew so I was a little hesitant.  
The stew, however was flavorful and filling.  Fennel and caraway seed give the stew an amazing aroma and it's a dish kids can help with too.  Hence the name "walk the plank stew"!

The most interesting thing I learned last night was that frozen seafood is good

Obviously fresh, just caught seafood is ideal...but that's not always possible.  Much like vegetables, a fish caught and frozen quickly will retain its flavor and texture. Certain "fresh" fish can take a week or more to make it to the grocer. I learned that SeaBest tilapia filets are frozen within 48 minutes of hitting land!
Frozen seafood also has a much longer shelf life and is more reasonably priced.  I also learned that many of the fish at the seafood counter in your local grocery store were once frozen too.  The store just thaws them there and you pay more!
SeaBest also wants to be known as an authority on seafood.  If you have any questions about how to cook seafood or need recipe ideas check out their website or tweet them @SeaBestSeafood.

I went home with a full belly and a bag full of seafood goodies! How do those judges on Top Chef do it? I was SO FULL!
Guess what? I'm not the only one with delicious meals in my future.  SeaBest gave me coupons for free SeaBest products to pass along to you!  

Here's how to win:
- Leave a comment on this blog telling me your favorite seafood recipe.

The winner will be selected on Monday, March 5.

To see where SeaBest is sold near you, visit their website.

Thank you again to the wonderful folks at SeaBest!

Love and under the sea,
Carissa & Kyle

Speaking of healthy fish - I just read this article in Consumer Reports about how Omega-3's can slow dementia and mental decline. Eat up!