Gettin' Fresh with Matt Moran

Eat, Interviews, Sydney / 12 November 2014

It’s not everyday that a celebrity chef hosts a private tour around one of Sydney’s premier fresh food spots.

Courtesy of LG Home Appliances, brand ambassador Matt Moran guided a group of us around the Fish Market in Pyrmont on Thursday. Prodding at cod and pulling up lobster, Matt revealed how to pick top-notch ingredients and keep them fresh. Here’s what I took away:

1. Total Body Exposure
When it comes to purchasing fresh seafood, whole fish tend to be fresher. In comparison to fillets, whole fish have generally spent less time exposed to decay-inducing air. Make sure to look out for bright eyes, shimmery scales, and rich red gills.
2. Don’t pull a mussel
It’s a myth that closed mussels are unfit to eat! If a mussel remains unopened, chances are that it’s just undercooked. Throw the closed mussel back into the pot and it should open straight up.

3. Scallop Sashimi
Forget the crackers and dip; instead, serve raw scallops as an easy, classy canapé. Fresh scallops can be purchased pre-shucked from the shell, but check that the flesh is a pure beige to creamy pink colour.

4. The Waiting Game
Resist buying fresh fruit and veg until it’s in season and widely available. It’s more cost effective, tastes better, and reduces your overall carbon footprint. According to Matt, November and December are the best months of the year – cherries, mangoes, peaches, figs… yum!
5. Cook Backwards
When shopping at farmers markets or fresh produce venues go along empty-handed and open-minded. Buy your ingredients according to what’s in season and looks fresh, then go home and consult your recipe book.
6. You Should Judge a Book by it’s Cover
The age-old saying doesn’t apply when it comes to buying produce. Usually, if it looks fresh then it is fresh! When it comes to buying red meat keep an eye out for colour and good texture. The meat should be firmly, finely textured and a light red cherry colour. Avoid meat with a really deep red colour, this may mean the meat has come from a stressed animal.

7. Don’t Treat em’ Lean!
Fatty red meat isn’t a bad thing! The best cuts have bits of fat weaved throughout to ensure that meat stays juicy after cooking (this is known as marbling). If you’re concerned about the calorie intact, cut away the fat after cooking the meat, that way you’ll still retain the taste.
8. I Like Grass
In Australia we’re fortunate enough to have the choice between grass fed and grain fed beef. Stuck on what to buy? It’s a texture versus taste debate. Grass fed beef has a more authentic “meaty” flavoursome taste, but tends to have more of a bite. Grain fed beef is soft and tender, but lacks rich flavours.
Find out more about keeping it fresh with LG Home Appliances. 

Visit Sydney Fish Market:
Bank Street, Pyrmont
7am – 4pm Monday-Thurday
7am – 5pm Friday – Sunday
Fisherman’s Wharf Restaurant dinner service is open until 11pm every night

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