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October is seafood month
By Johanne McInnis

        Try these unique recipes

        Someone in my office said quite loudly that October is seafood month, and it got me to thinking how lucky we "Maritimers" are that seafood is right in our backyard (so to speak). If I ask any of my friends that visit from Ontario or further west what they want to eat while they are here, the answer is pretty much always: 'Seafood would be nice'. And, as they get ready to leave, it's one quick trip to the city market to stock up on crates of lobster, mussels and scallops. Off they go, seafood in tow. We have Americans coming off the cruise ships that visit our foggy little city all summer long and what do they want: Seafood. I can see why. I've lived in Ontario and I've visited several American cities. The quality of seafood they get is nowhere near ours; and the prices they pay, highway robbery I swear! They come to the Maritimes, taste our wonderful fresh seafood and see that you can get lobster for less than $20/lbs, no wonder they gorge themselves silly with the stuff.

        Ok, so as I child I couldn't stand any of it, especially the Friday night fish cakes (sorry mom). As I grew up and tried different things I realized I actually loved seafood other than raw oysters, which I still can't even look at. It also took time and many tested recipes before I could get my own kids to enjoy seafood as well. I recently researched a little and found out the following.

        The health benefits of seafood are mind-boggling.

        They are low in saturated fat, and an excellent source of protein, vitamins and minerals.

        Omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids found in all seafood, including shellfish, oysters and shrimp. Research suggests these fatty acids may help protect against heart disease.

        The same studies show eating fresh water fish and seafood two to three times a week can help lower the risk for heart attacks. Seafood is also a great source of "B" Vitamins such "B-6", "B- 12", biotin and niacin. With little calories and so many health benefits why are so few of us eating seafood?

        Go ahead, be nice to your heart this month and buy some seafood. Here are two very tasty (super good!) recipes for you to try. Until next time, happy creating cooking! Simple and spicy is the game but it's easy to tone it down a bit. It's a lovely fall recipe that's quick and easy to make not to mention spectacular to serve. I usually serve it on a nice bed of lettuce surrounded by cucumbers.

Spicy Salmon and Tomatoes<

- 1 pound boneless, skinless salmon fillets, about 1/2 inch thick, cut into 4 pieces

- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup onion, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic, minced

1. Rinse salmon and pat dry. Set aside. Add olive oil to large skillet. Place over medium-high heat.

Add onion and garlic to hot skillet and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.

2. Stir in remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil.

        Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 4 to 6 minutes or until salmon flakes easily with a fork. Serve on a bed of lettuce and surround with cucumbers.

        This next recipe I used a lot when my girls were little. I would tell them it was chicken and they ate the whole thing. It's really good and only takes 20 minutes to make!

Broiled Sole Parmesan

- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (not the "canned" stuff )
- 3 tablespoons of butter or margarine, softened
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons sliced shallots or green onions
-3 tablespoons of mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon of grated lemon peel
- 1 1/2 lbs. Sole filets
- 2 tablespoons of lemon juice

        Heat your broiler to 500F (260 C) and set top rack so that it's 3 to 4 inches from heat. Place sole fillets on a broiler pan and sprinkle with lemon juice. Once the oven is ready, broil the fish until it flakes with a fork (about 3-5 minutes). Remove from oven and let sit.

        Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together all remaining ingredients. Spread the Parmesan mixture on sole fillets and broil until bubbly and golden brown (another 3-5 minutes).

        Makes 4 to 6 servings --- If you would like to ask a food related or cooking question, see an article and/or specific recipes, please feel free to email me at: jxm550@yahoo.ca. Until next time, happy, creative cooking!!