Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Eating Jellyfish for Food

Greetings food lovers.
Recently Eau Claire Wisconsin Food Blog reader "Little Byte" from Eau Claire, Wisconsin (cute pic included)
asked us, can I eat jellyfish? and if so are they available in any Eau Claire Restaurants? Also where would one buy food grade jellyfish?

Great question and thanks for asking. Let me begin by saying I am a fan of both watching and eating jellyfish. On our last trip to Chicago's Shedd Aquarium we took lots of pictures of jellyfish and had a chance to dine at the exclusive Jellyfish Restaurant, it was delicious. The taste of jellyfish will depend much on what it is prepared in and the spices used when cooking. The texture can be gelantious to crispy depending on how it is prepared. So YES you can eat "SOME" jellyfish, but not all species are edible.The most consumed species are the Cannonball and Mushroom Jellies. A little digging on the internet and I found some good information about both saltwater and freshwater jellies. The South Carolina DNR has a great publication on jellyfish located  at...https://www.dnr.sc.gov/marine/pub/seascience/jellyfi.html The Wisconsin DNR considers freshwater jellies as an invasive species to our lakes and keeps a list of lakes in Wisconsin where jellyfish have been discovered you can find this information at dnr.wi.gov/lakes/invasives/AISLists.aspx?species=FRESHWATER_JELLYFISH

 Not sure if there is currently a food place in Eau Claire that offers them on the menu. I do know that once a year at the downtown taste of Calgary event here in Eau Claire there have been food vendors who offered jellyfish dishes for tasting. This years event is being held August 14-17 and is a great place to expand your culinary tastes with exotic foods from around the world. You can find more info at http://www.tasteofcalgary.com/

I have not checked yet, but I have been told that some of the local Asian markets do sell frozen jellyfish. I did find a great recipe located at http://www.fairchildgiftcompany.com/freeseafoodrecipes.html
 If you search online there are several places where you can purchase frozen jellyfish.
One jellyfish recipe I have tried that works good for fresh cannonball jellies is as follows,

2x2x2 Jellyfish stir fry

1 cup baby sea scallops
1 cup small peeled and deveined shrimp
1 cup cannonball jellyfish cut into 1 inch strips
2 tbl. spoon butter
1 tbl spoon olive oil
1 tbl. spoon minced garlic
1/2 cup bamboo shoots
2 cups cooked and cooled linguine
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions: In a skillet combine olive oil, garlic and 1 tablespoon butter on high heat, add shrimp and jellyfish first, cook for two minutes, then add scallops and bamboo shoots, cook two minutes more and add linguine and remaining tablespoon butter and cook two minutes more. Serve hot immediately with garlic bread sticks.

This is simple and very tasty!

Well little byte, hope we here at Eau Claire Wisconsin Food have answered your question's. I have posted more jellyfish photographs here.
 Until next time...

Munchies signing out!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Eau Claire Wisconsin Meat Confluence

Greetings and Salivation's fellow food junkies. Once again I find myself caught up in the fast flowing rivers of life and yet another year has done gone by. Reflecting back on 2013 the thing I remember best about this year is...MEAT. Grilled steak, Marinated Pork Loins, Garlic Crusted Chicken, Grilled Wisconsin Brats, Smoked Bacon, BBQ ribs, Venison Sausage and more meat, Meat, MEAT!

Wisconsin Meatcicles
Fast forward to 2014, January, Polar Vortex swirling out of Canada down to Wisconsin and creating temps with wind chills in the -40 degree range, and I had to shovel 8 inches of powder off my driveway. The whole job was done in 30 minutes, but I was beginning to feel hunger pains. New years resolution said "less red meat" so I jump in the Mustang and cruise down the block to Festival Foods to find some healthy green roughage to graze on. As I am on my way I am greeted by this view(See Picture to Left) in the parking lot. Immediately my mouth begins to water a bit and I begin the process of guilt elimination. No, jerky does not really count as red meat, I ponder on my way into the grocery store. "Yes it is" says that little voice inside the RIGHT side of my brain, It is all MEAT, shut the hell up "meat hater" is the response from the MANLY Left side. As I walk through Festivals Foods endless rows of greens I feel like a ruminant in a clover field, so many greens, get some mixed spring greens with spinach...Check, now broccoli, carrots, red onions and tomatoes...Check. Now for some salad dressing and croutons. Shoot over to dairy and snatch up some Parmesan cheese. Got it, all is good, head for the checkout and BAM there it is Jack links peppered jerky steak nuggets OMG what a great companion for bacon bits, cause they are not really the meat I was thinking of when I made my new years resolution, At least not the same as raw meat, right, and besides when I made that new years resolution I only meant raw meat like steaks and ribs and pork chops and chicken and; Snap out of it man. I check out, as I am walking out of the store, feeling a little guilty about my plans to go home and enjoy my Jack Links Jerky Garden Salad I am hit with the incredibly scrumptious aroma of BBQ ribs and chicken from Famous Daves on the corner.
   Suddenly the head is talking once again, right side says keep walking get to the car, Left side says Feast for Two lets get lunch, dinner and leftovers for tomorrow. Right side says that's crazy, Left side says Thrifty and you can even add beef brisket and BBQ chicken and make a Mans Meat Salad. Done... and that is how my 2014 News years Resolution ended in just two weeks and a trip to the store. However I enjoyed two days of the most amazing meat confluence salads you can ever imagine. My Feast for two was Amazing and I had leftovers for two days. I am now convinced if you just add meat to salads it makes everything so much healthier, BS says the right Side. Left side says 2014 resolution, lets eat more salad! Be sure to check out our free recipe library for some unique free recipes.
Till next time....
Munchies Out!!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

"Get Beef" With Eau Claire Wisconsin Food

Ok, so the title gives away this Eau Claire food blog title. Perhaps it should have been titled "where's the beef" in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, either way let your salivating taste buds lead you down the path to "Texas Roadhouse" located at 5019 Keystone crossing in Eau Claire. Located just down the street from Best Buy and a stones throw from Pichana it is worth stopping in when your hungry for some man sized meat N taters wrapped up with a some Texas sized fun.

After eating here about 20 times in the past two years including two Birthday party dinners, it is hard for me to make a main coarse suggestion, because the steaks I have had, have all been delicious. The fresh rolls with Cinnamon  butter are scrumptious little sides as well. Add some cold beers from the bar to the mix plus the singing wait staff and you have a dinner party for everyone, except, people with peanut allergies, here you will not be safe, as the peanuts flow free from barrels and tubs.

If it is your Birthday you are celebrating then the Texas Roadhouse staff have a few surprises in store for the guest of honor if you let them know. Be sure and have them "bring out the saddle". The menu features a great selection of food and is available at the Texas Roadhouse website.

As a side note I will add each time I have been to Texas Roadhouse there is a twenty minute or longer wait due to the crowds, you may wish to call ahead (715-838-0035) to check on waiting times, especially on the weekend. Either way the Food and fun is worth waiting for and the waiting room is located close to the bar has cable TV and all the free peanuts you can eat...Brilliant!

That's all I got for now, C ya soon.