This is a guest post from Chris McMahon. . .
Flinders Island has been a real seafood experience for me. Now if someone else had said something like that about a week ago I would not have been all that jealous - I've always enjoyed fish, but would never have put myself in the same ranks as all those crazy people who get so excited about seafood buffets.
Well it might be the fresh seafood we are catching here, or maybe Dave's excellent cooking, but my taste buds and my mind have both been expanding here. Last night Dave cooked me some abalone that he had gathered around the Island. Amazing!
At the same meal we had calamari - including the famous squid that my son Aedan and I caught off the jetty. I've had the odd bit of calamari and chips from the local fish and chip store - but I'm sure that is not even the same species as what I tasted last night! The flavor was complex and beautiful, the texture vastly different from anything I have tasted before. Excellent time had by all - the only problem is that Dave has effectively killed our ritual of going down the local fish and chip shop. None of us can face eating what had passed for calamari after tasting what fresh calamari properly prepared tastes like.
Today it was exploring over on the other side of the island, and a visit to a local wildlife sanctuary.
Tonight it was clam pasta, followed by freshly caught oysters fried in garlic butter and served on garlic bruschetta (we have been busy on Flinders today at low tide gathering the clams and oysters), then trevally (beautiful light tasting fish with light white flesh).
Now I have never been a fan of strong seafood tastes, and have shied away from them (i.e. lobster etc), but I could not believe the taste of the oyster! It gave me emotional and physical reactions in parts of my body I had never felt before. Of course mentioning this was giving me physical reactions led to the obvious jokes:)
Not only have I been introduced to these fantastic new flavors, I have even been permitted to glimpse a few of the secrets of the Freer kitchen at first hand as apprentice chef.
Tomorrow we are headed north to look for abalone.
My stomach will never forgive me going back to Brisbane:)