Sunday, June 3, 2012

..: Walleye-palooza 2012 :.. Featuring Bacon, Vidalia Onions, Potato Chips & Mayo


I can't take credit for the title of this post; that flash of creativity comes from Parsley Sage of The Deep Dish and her comment on my last post when I announced we were headed for a week of fishing in Canada, catching, cooking and eating walleye every day, for seven days in a row.

She christened it Fishapalooza and I loved it.  And so it shall now be.

Fishapalooza 2012 was unlike any of our other 14 trips to Ontario. The weather was extremely mild, so unlike other years when we've had to pack parkas and long underwear for our annual end-of-May sojourn.

This year, we had weather in the 70's and 80's, which would have been great if we were headed for the beach. But the warmer than usual temperatures beckoned black flies and mosquitoes who are Rosemary aficionados.

Thanks to the Internet, however, we were able to outfit ourselves appropriately, though, with pretty reliable 10-day forecasts under our belts.  So instead of headbands and mittens, we packed bug spray, sunscreens and tank tops.  

And, I'm pleased to announce, yours truly caught the most fish in our little foursome.  That's really not bragging because Mr. Rosemary thinks it's high time I became a respectable fisherman, since I've been under his patient tutelage for many a year now.

And, with my sister-in-law Lori, have also become pretty creative at cooking the fish, too.  The men like to boast that we have seven different ways of cooking the fish.  That's pretty much true, although really they're just variations on the same theme:  
  • Pat the fillets dry with paper towels. (remember they were swimming only three hours beforehand) with paper towels.
  • Preheat the broiler.
  • Line a broiler pan with foil, punching holes through the slots.  
  • Spritz with vegetable spray.
  • Sprinkle with dry seasoning of your choice.
  • Dot with butter.
  • Broil for 5 to 7 minutes.

We have grilled outside, too, but after a day on the water, we find the bug-free solace of the cabin comforting.

Here are some of the different ways we've seasoned the walleye:
  • Cajun seasoning
  • on a bed of sliced lemons
  • Montreal steak seasoning
  • marinated in a balsamic vinaigrette, then sprinkled with Romano cheese
  • bathed in teriyaki sauce
  • smothered with bacon and vidalia onions
  • dipped in egg then mixture of seasoned bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese
  • pan-fried in butter after a dip in egg then pancake mix
The bacon method has become one of everyone's favorites, but my personal fattening favorite (the fish is healthy eating, right?) is slathering mayo over the fillets and then pressing crushed potato chips over them.  (This is vacation!  And I worked hard for that fish!)
We have some pretty nice side dishes, too:  rice verde, pasta carbonera, haluski, fried potatoes with green pepper and onions, carrots in raspberry sauce, steamed sugar snap peas, roasted asparagus, cowboy salsa.  Good hearty eatin'.


Here's what one of our plates looked like:


Yeah, I know it looks bland, but stashing fresh parsley and food photography props with our gear wasn't part of the deal. Those potato chip crusted fillets were great.

I think I've had my fill of fish for a while, though.  A juicy hamburger along with a crisp salad sounds real good.

23 comments:

  1. What a great trip! Ben and I would like to catch and eat, but alas, neither of us would know what to do with a whole fish :(

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  2. Looks like it was a great vacation! My sympathies with the blackflies! They are voracious, aren't they?

    I think I like the idea of the Montreal steak seasoning ! Talk about adding a nice zing ... with a big green salad and a cold beer? Heaven!

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    Replies
    1. We've tried a lot of different seasonings and that mixture is always a fave. I love it on just about anything!

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  3. It is always nice to get away to the outdoors! I have to give you credit for being creative with that fish, I am not sure if I could have come up with that many meals! The one with the romano cheese sounds especially tasty. Enjoy the day.

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    1. That was a new addition this year. Just that sprinkling of shredded cheese -- not too much -- made a nice salty crust.

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  4. You know you just went to my walleye-loving heart - and my husband's - well before he got married - the dream vacation was backpacking in Canada for two weeks and only eating what was caught in the lake (and drinking beer). The lake view amazes and the fish beckons!

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    Replies
    1. We did indeed eat what we caught -- and plenty of Canadian beer to wash it down!

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  5. Oh, I love walleye, and it's been years since I had it. Walleye cheeks are a particular favorite. Despite seven straight days of walleye, it sounds like you had a good time!

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    1. Sometimes (so I'm told) the cheeks are hard to get in smaller fish. The biggest one we (and it was me!) caught was 15 inches. Most of them were 12. That makes for tasty meat all over. You're right, though, when we have 'em, everyone goes for the cheeks!

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  6. What a fantastic trip!! look at those fish!! congrats -
    Mary x

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    Replies
    1. It was a good trip . . . I still want to try a Pimm's, though!

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  7. Your gorgeous photos are making my Canadian heart swell. :)

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    Replies
    1. Mr. Rosemary wants to buy Canada.

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  8. This looks great! Sometimes a normal-looking dish can really taste very good, even I don't bother for photography all the time. Sometimes I just enjoy the food and forget about food styling. Love your post and hey, those fishes look great!

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    1. I used to make people wait while I take photos; this is real food eaten by real people. Lately I've been trying to make sure there are leftovers so I can take a little more (less pressured) time to make a little effort. Sometimes it works!

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  9. That is SOME fish! Wow, congratulations to your husband. What a nice catch.

    The views you have there are out of this world. Might make a few mosquito bites worth it (I think). Mosquitos and flies like sweet people I've been told.
    Sam

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    Replies
    1. I don't get bit nearly as much as I used to . . . am I getting less sweet?!?!

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  10. How beautiful, my friend! Ryan had the opportunity to take a fishing trip like this last year. What memories! Thank you for brightening my day...and making my stomach grumble (just before lunch...perfect!) I hope you have a fabulous week!

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    1. I didn't think I'd enjoy the fishing part as much as I did. (I knew I'd enjoy the cooking and the eating.) It was fun!

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  12. All that fishing and freshly caught fish for dinner. I'd have been in heaven. Congrats on your large haul.

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  13. Congrats on catching the most fish. I haven't been fishing in years. I always enjoyed it. Beautiful photos and it sounds like you had a nice time.

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I realize you don't have to take the time to comment . . . but it makes my day! So glad you decided to stay.