In the past couple of weeks just finished reading both “Medium Raw” and “Kitchen Confidential” by author/cook/chef Anthony Bourdain.
Yes, I’ve read the oft-quoted “Don’t order fish on Monday” part in Confidential, and Bourdain retracts that maxim in Medium Raw saying it was essentially about a time and place and things have changed.
I don’t eat seafood, so it’s N/A to me.
But one of the most interesting parts of the book was all about seafood. The work of one man in one very high-end restaurant.
Bourdain went and spent part of a day with Justo Thomas, the man who filets and prepares fish in a restaurant called Le Bernardin in New York.
It was impressive to hear how this one one man goes through seven hundred pounds of fish. A day. Some days 1,000.
Every piece needs to be perfect. Meticulous.
Bourdain reports that it doesn’t smell of fish in the prep area. “Not even the vestigial smell of seafood you get at even the best wholesalers or Japanese fish-markets. The fish is exquisitely fresh.”
Bourdain writes, “Any piece of fish you are likely to see at your supermarket or fishmonger’s would be sniffed out and thrown away immediately here.”
While I’m not interested in eating fish, I’ve read enough by Bourdain that I’m curious to see his “Les Halles Cookbook” which I have requested from the library so I can perhaps make Steak et frites chez moi. Or at least read it and get hungry.