Baked Massaman Snapper and Buying Seafood in Boise

Thursday, March 19, 2015

One of my goals is to find 60 recipes that I can rotate throughout the year for family dinners. With 60 rotational recipes, it will be easy to plan what I am making for the week, what to have in my food storage and I can coordinate better what to buy when things are on sale.

I found a recipe for Baked Massaman Snapper online and thought it looked really good, however, I didn't realize how hard it would be to find the ingredients. I went to Walmart and thought I could pick up frozen Snapper in their little seafood section, but they didn't have any.

I next went to Fred Meyer and asked at their seafood counter. The employee told me that she didn't have any, but she could order some from their distributor. When she mentioned special ordering, I felt a little nervous and wondering how much that would cost. She said she would look into it and call me. I felt better about looking into it first and gave her my number.

A few days later we were at Albertsons and I asked at their seafood counter to see if they had any Snapper. Their employee at the seafood counter told me that they didn't and didn't offer any help beyond that.

The employee at Fred Meyer called my cell phone and told me that several customers were looking for Snapper and she was going to order some and have it there on Saturday. She said it would be a whole fish and I could come in and look at it to see if I wanted it. I liked that she called and didn't pressure me to feel obligated to buy from them. I went in on Saturday and a different employee was at the seafood counter. The employee told me that there was an accident on a highway, the deliveries hadn't come yet, and to check back later. I checked back on Tuesday and it was a different employee and she didn't know anything about it and went to check their logs. As the employee was checking their logs, I noticed this hideous looking whole fish in the display with these huge round eyes called a Rockfish. The employee came back and said the Snapper came in and someone must have bought it. She recommended that I try Reel Foods Fish Market in downtown Boise.

I thought I would play it smart and email Reel Foods Fish Market to make sure that they sold Snapper before driving downtown. They emailed me back and said that they sold Snapper. With my toddler, we drove downtown to get the Snapper. When I got there, I immediately noticed that Reel Foods Fish Market had Snapper filets. I also noticed that the Snapper had the name Rockfish next to it so I asked the clerk about it. She said that they are the same fish. I remembered the weird looking fish I had seen in Fred Meyer and wanted to bang my head against the wall. The clerk went to weigh the Snapper and mentioned that it smelled a little off. She said she would still sell it to me if I really wanted it or she would recommend the Cod. I could feel my heart plummenting. Anytime, anybody says that any kind of meat smells off, you don't buy it and you don't eat it. I questioned her about the Cod tasting similar to the Snapper. The clerk said that the recipe should work the same with Cod. By that time I didn't feel like driving back to Fred Meyer to get the Rockfish, so I got the Cod.

The Snapper/Cod wasn't the only ingredient that I had trouble finding for this recipe. I couldn't find Massaman Curry Paste at Fred Meyer, Albertsons or Walmart. I ended up going to an Asian Market and getting it there.

Despite having trouble finding the ingredients, we decided to keep Baked Massaman Snapper in our recipe rotation. You can find the recipe, by clicking here. Once you have all the ingredients, the recipe is super easy to make and tastes really, really good. It tastes great with Cod, too. The only variation I made was to omit the Caster Sugar.
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