Our series, Hooked: Newlyweds in the Kitchen , is where Boston-based couple Kim Watson Ito and Justin Ito-Adler chronicle their love of seafood and a whole lot of quarantine cooking. Follow their adventures here and on Instagram and Facebook at #hookedonwulfs
The fun thing about writing a food blog with your food-obsessed husband is that it ends up being pretty heavily reliant on his expertise, a lot less so on your writing abilities. So, what is a food-novice writer to do when the person who actually knows what they’re talking about is too busy cooking to talk about it? That’s where my nagging powers come in. Watch, as I sit on the couch and pester Justin relentlessly until he answers me.
PREP 1: SASHIMI
Kim: Okay, I’ll start since you won’t. Every time we write one of these, I surprise myself with the many new and undiscovered ways in which I am completely basic. Like eating trout sashimi for example. It’s like, okay, but I would really rather some salmon or tuna. Justin? Remember the sashimi?
Justin: [*In the kitchen cooking breakfast*] I disagree. I think trout sashimi is really good. It’s not as oily as salmon. It’s more minerally, has a nice texture and a pretty mild flavor. It’s a safe, for-everyone raw fish. I’m surprised you weren’t more into it.
PREP 2: CEVICHE
Kim: This I remember liking a lot better. I’m pretty much always into ceviche, but I think you did something special here. Hey Justin… the ceviche… what was that thing you did?
Justin: [*Now making his second breakfast*] Oh, the ceviche. I remember we both REALLY liked this. Like usual, I cut the fish into half-inch cubes, but for the juice I decided to use some kimchi. I strained the kimchi fluid from the jar, and added the juice of two limes, some red onion, cilantro, chives, and salt. It worked out pretty well—the kimchi gave it some heat and a little more depth. Probably why you liked it.
PREP 3: PAN-SEARED
Kim: So, this was a surprise for me. If you’ve been keeping up with #HookedOnWulfs, you’ll know that cooked fish isn’t always—actually it’s really never—my jam. But this was something special. I don’t know if it was the sauce or the prep or what, but this fish was 10/10.
Justin: [*Paying attention now*] Yeah, this was awesome. Remember we’d been watching that BBQ show on Netflix? That’s where the idea came from. I wanted to make a sauce similar to Carolina Gold. I took Dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, some Kewpie mayo, and a little lemon and mixed it up. I first rested the trout on a paper towel to take some moisture out of the skin. I salted it liberally and then put a little bit of oil in a very hot pan. I placed the fish skin-side down, using a spatula to press it into the pan so the skin would sear evenly. After a few minutes I put a dollop of butter in the pan and used the butter to baste the fish by spooning it over the top. I flipped the fish, salted the top, served it rare and placed it over a bed of mushrooms and onions. Garnished with paprika and Maldon, and that was it. Wanna try my second breakfast? It’s blog-related.
PREP 4: BONUS ROUND – SMOKED CHALKSTREAM TROUT
Kim: Wow you are always eating. But oh, I do like that! Super salty.
Justin: It is good! In fairness, it is twice as expensive than supermarket smoked fish, but twice as good, too. It has better texture, better flavor, better everything. The saltiness here isn’t an afterthought—it’s a highlight.
Kim: Jito? Any last words to close out our interview?
Justin: Yeah, I’m happy we finally found a fish that you’ll let me cook. For a while, I’ve felt like I was turning into raw salmon. Also, the smoked ChalkStream is 100% a winner. Kinda like you, for carrying the weight on this blog.
Kim: [*May have taken some liberties on that last line*]
Kim Watson Ito and Justin Ito-Adler are newlyweds living in the North End of Boston. One is a professional writer and the other is a former restaurant industry professional. We’ll let you discover who’s who. Their kitchen is tiny, but their appetites are big. Hooked is a collection of their trials, tribulations, and tastes as they explore the wide world of Wulf’s seafood.