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I’ve been in serious seafood mode recently. Here’s five local dishes I’ve relished that I can enthusiastically recommend:
Classic Garlic Scampi
I happily slurped up Suede Blue’s delicious fettuccini pasta, drenched in an aromatic garlic, butter and white wine sauce. Punctuated with sweet, juicy cherry tomato halves, sautéed mushrooms and large, pink prawns, it was well worth the trip to Roseville.
This pretty roll, offered at Akebono on Freeport Boulevard, is crammed full of shrimp tempura and topped with maguro tuna, hamachi, salmon and avocado. Colorful and delicious, it’s even more enjoyable when paired with an order of the restaurant’s rustic, satisfying gyoza.
Café Bernardo midtown does a great job with salmon dishes (have you ever tried the salmon BLT? It’s fabulous). When I’m hankering for a big chunk of fish, I often head to the friendly café for its salmon plate. The exterior of the fish is potato chip-crispy, while the interior remains wonderfully moist. Laid atop green beans (I often ask for sautéed spinach as a substitute) and a mound of the café’s scallion mashed potatoes, the ensemble is drizzled with a subtly sweet soy-sake glaze.
I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying several renditions of octopus salad at Tuli Bistro over the past few months, but the most recent just may be my favorite. This salad partnered big, chewy chunks of octopus with just-soft-enough runner beans and fennel, jazzed up with snappy leaves of arugula and freshly-chopped parsley.
Gamberi Freschi con Caponata
This artful appetizer is a tasty way to launch your meal at Il Fornaio. Grilled fresh wild shrimp is plated up with a brightly-flavored mound of caper-dotted caponata (an eggplant and tomato compote) and enlivened with parsley sauce. Pile a bit of each on Il Fornaio’s excellent, fresh-baked bread.