A tome. A bible. A compendium. An encyclopaedia. A classic.
Recently launched cookbook Sea Gastronomy: Fish & Shellfish of the North Atlantic by Michael O’Meara the chef/proprietor of Galway’s renowned seafood restaurant, Oscars Seafood Bistro, is all of the above and more.
At 440 pages, 380 colour photographs, 220 recipes and well-researched scientific information on each of 120 species from the North Atlantic this is indeed a highly significant addition to the Irish culinary library. Georgina Campbell notes that Sea Gastronomy is “a game changer in the way we understand, value and cook with the treasures of the ocean.” She goes on to say it is “an outstanding work … surely destined to take its place alongside classics like Alan Davidson’s North Atlantic Seafood (1979 ) and Rick Stein’s English Seafood Cookery (1988 ).”
Sea Gastronomy is unquestionably the most comprehensive and authoritative guide to fish cuisine ever published in Ireland. It covers North Atlantic fish from their habitats to their preparation, including step-by-step instructions with images, and cooking. Then you have the delicious recipes accompanied by mouth-watering images: butter-roasted lobster; mackerel paté; whole megrim with winter chanterelle mushrooms; octopus sashimi; sweaty betty with pappardelle and morel cream; and monkfish with smoky and spicy chorizo sauce.
There is an emphasis on sustainability and harvesting issues evident in the book and the assistance of marine biologist Dr. Peter Tyndall who acted as marine consultant is acknowledged. His expertise and first-hand experience of sustainability issues is evident throughout and in an essay included in the book.
Sunday Times food writer and restaurant critic Ernie Whalley brings his vast experience in the food and beverage sector to bear in his foreword and beverage notes and he comments “I am confident that Sea Gastronomy will be a prime mover helping to bring about a sea change in our attitude to fish.”
Sea Gastronomy is the product of Michael O’Meara’s passion for fish and seafood. It represents over twenty years research, cooking, diving and photographing the great diversity of seafood to be found in the North West Atlantic. Michael is the chef/proprietor of Galway’s renowned seafood restaurant, Oscars Seafood Bistro. The unique combination of culinary and photographic skills, academic excellence and most of all his expertise, passion and commitment to all things related to Irish fish, seafood and fish cuisine make Michael O’Meara the ideal candidate to produce the first authoritative comprehensive book on Irish fish and fish cookery.