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Sydney Fish Market – Cooking School

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by Gary Brown (subscribe)
I am a freelance writer and photographer from Sydney who has now had five books published on fishing. I also write for the NSW Fishing Monthly, Visit the Shire, Fisho App & Tackle Tactics. I also like to travel and experience new things to do.
Published November 30th 2014
In our house hold I don't get to cook very much, as I have a wife that can cook anything that she puts her mind to, a daughter-in-law that is a chef and a future son-in-law who is also a practicing chef who has worked at places like the Savoy in London for two years, the Four Season in Sydney, plus many more and Andrew is only 26. So you can see that I don't get the chance to cook as much as I like, but when I do it is meat or fish on the BBQ.
Andrew and Alissa's creation of silver trevally with Singapore Noodles and Veg's

The Sydney Fish Markets is not all about fresh seafood. There are so many things that you can do there it would take years to get through them all. They have behind the scenes tours where you can find out to explore all facets of the market and its operations - including the auction floor, restaurants where you can dine on the finest seafood in the world while looking over their magnificent fishing fleet and of course it is a place where you can go and buy your seafood.

Now if you are like me and you like to catch and cook your own seafood!
Andrew caught this tarwhine and silver trevally while fishing in Botany Bay with peeled prawns.

The Sydney Fish Markets has something for you. They have a cooking school where you can learn the fine art of cooking the fish you either catch yourself or buy at the markets. Not only do you learn how to cook, you also get to eat what you cook and wash it down with a fine glass of wine.

I was lucky enough to be given a birthday present to attend the Spanish cooking school at the Fish Markets with my wife Leanne, her sister Cheryl and her partner Dennis. As I had never been before I didn't know what to expect. All I knew was that we were going to have a hands on demonstration by a leading chef or seafood educator, followed by a hands-on cooking session to prepare and cook our own meal, which we would sit down to eat while tasting some wine and to top it off we would get a Sydney Seafood School apron (which I wear while cooking my own fish) & recipe kit to take home.

Upon arrival we were treated to fish appetisers to have with a selection of wine, champagne or orange juice. We were then ushered into a room much like a university lecture, but smaller to be taken through the different ways of preparing and cooking a Spanish meal of Tapas and a seafood Paella.
Now that's a Paella. No this wasn't ours. It was one that was cooking at the Borough Markets in London.

The overall time that we were there was around four hours. Now this was to enjoy the pre dinner appetisers and drinks, learn how to prepare and cook the meal, prepare and cook the meal ourselves, set our own dining table up and last but my no means least sit down and eat the meal we had prepared.

Even though I was enthralled with the cooking demonstration we were given by seafood educator I couldn't help look at my watch and see that we only had about an hour and fifteen minutes left to whip up our meal, get the dinner table ready and sit down and enjoy our meal without rushing.

From memory they had eight kitchen benches that would accommodate up to five budding chefs to prepare and cook their own meal. As there we only four of us I thought that we had to work like a well oiled machine to get everything done. And work together we did. While someone was shelling the peas for the Paella, someone was making a sauce, boiling the rice, tossing the ingredients for the salad, chopping the onions and for me it was peeling the prawns, filleting the sardines, cutting up the squid, de bearding the mussels and anything else that had to do with the seafood. With all this going on we still had to set the dining table.
Our end result. I couldn't wait to tuck in and see what it tasted likel

All I can say we couldn't have done all of this without the help of the teacher and her assistants. They kept a watchful eye on all of us to make sure that we were not only doing things correctly, they would suggest what we would need to do next to keep things on track.

Even though we only had about an hour and fifteen minutes left after leaving the lecture auditorium we did not have to rush the cooking and we had plenty of time to sit down and enjoy our meal.
To say that I learnt so much going to this seafood cooking school would be an understatement and the lesson learnt will stay with me forever.

Just recently I went out for a fish with my daughter's fiancé Andrew in Botany Bay and we caught a few yellowfin bream, tarwhine and silver trevally. Andrew and Alissa cooked the yellowfin bream and silver trevally by stuffing them with a mixture or coriander, lime, chilli and ginger and serving them up with Singapore noodles and veg's. I kept mine simple by just cooking them in foil in the oven and serving them with a tossed salad.

If you ever get the chance to go to the Sydney Seafood Cooking School you should jump at it. I am sure you will learn so much and like the four of us you will enjoy sitting down to eat something that you have prepared yourself.
Andrew's Tarwhine with Singapore Noddles and Veg's

The next time you are looking at doing something different go to the Sydney Fish Markets Cooking Classes and look at their up and coming classes. May you will see one you would like to do. You will be surprised at what they have on offer.
This kingfish was caught in Sydney Harbour. They make great cutlets.

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Why? If you like cooking
When: All year round
Your Comment
It must be very satisfying to learn cook the fish you have just caught.
by Bryony Harrison (score: 4|12604) 2129 days ago
Great article thank you for sharing. Your photos were lovely too. I think I would enjoy the cooking class at the Sydney Fish Market very much.
by CassandraJoy (score: 3|1021) 1771 days ago
It sure is and its so healthy as well
by Gary Brown (score: 2|496) 2129 days ago
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