Enjoy your catch of the day in a tasty yet sustainable way + My fishy treat in Bishop’s Stortford + My recipe for flexible fish cakes

Davida Erdahl

Alex Ballard, who grew up in Bishop’s Stortford and performs as a professional community dietitian for the NHS in West Essex, writes a fortnightly column, Food plan Discuss, in the Stortford Indie about taking modest measures in direction of a healthier life-style… Alex Ballard’s Alex Talks Food plan column (34777177) […]

Alex Ballard, who grew up in Bishop’s Stortford and performs as a professional community dietitian for the NHS in West Essex, writes a fortnightly column, Food plan Discuss, in the Stortford Indie about taking modest measures in direction of a healthier life-style…

Alex Ballard’s Alex Talks Food plan column (34777177)

Fish has normally played a significant function in British food stuff background, with classics which includes prawn cocktail, sardines on toast and, the public’s favourite, fish and chips. Even the English-born Worcestershire sauce makes use of anchovies for a punchy component.

Alongside the multipurpose flavours, contrasting textures and loaded colours, fish presents us with nourishing dietary resources of protein, calcium, iodine, selenium and vitamin D.

Baked salmon garnished with asparagus and tomatoes with herbs. (34777005)
Baked salmon garnished with asparagus and tomatoes with herbs. (34777005)

Fish, and especially oily fish, is also a primary provider of omega-three. In current a long time, this spouse and children of fat has been placed on a pedestal, with study displaying that suitable intakes can minimize the threat of coronary heart ailment, make improvements to swelling, preserve memory and protect against melancholy.

We are therefore encouraged to consume two parts of fish for every week, which includes a single of an oily assortment, these types of as mackerel, kippers, sardines, salmon, trout, sprats, herring, whitebait and pilchards.

Tinned fish can also give omega-three, but just consider a peek at the label very first. An grownup-dimension portion is both 140g of clean fish (roughly the dimension of the palm of your hand) or a single modest can.

The varied selection of fresh fish available from Potter Street Fishmongers in Eat 17 (32212247)
The different selection of clean fish accessible from Potter Avenue Fishmongers in Consume 17 (32212247)

Shark, swordfish and marlin can incorporate concentrated resources of mercury and, therefore, must be averted by gals who are pregnant or setting up a newborn, and by all children less than sixteen. All other older people, which includes breastfeeding gals, must limit these certain species to a greatest of a single portion for every week.

If fish is off your menu, alternate omega-three loaded foodstuff contain nuts and seeds, rapeseed and linseed oil, soya items, environmentally friendly leafy vegetables and omega-three enriched eggs, breads, yoghurts and spreads.

Even with the prosperity of positive aspects this pure food stuff resource delivers, building reasonable and environmentally-friendly selections is important for the fate of our oceans. Presently, world-wide fish manufacturing is nearing its sustainable limit and exploitation has elevated threefold considering that the seventies. In this article are some simple guidelines to enable protect against inventory depletion and clear customer conscience…

  • Lower again if your family consumes more than the proposed weekly amount and instead up your plant-dependent protein match with more beans, pulses, nuts, seeds and tofu.
  • Loads more fish in the sea! There is a entire ocean to take pleasure in, so enable give shares a possibility to replenish by mixing up your weekly browsing checklist and rotating concerning a significant assortment of seasonal choices.
  • Use much less regular possibilities for illustration, by switching cod and haddock for coley and hake, using mackerel rather than tuna and opting for United kingdom rope-developed mussels above prawns.
  • Shares of smaller sized, non-predatory fish (these types of as sardines and anchovies) swim reduce down the food stuff chain and often replenish faster than more substantial, predatory species.
  • Support moral fishing practices by seeking out for and obtaining items with MSC (Maritime Stewardship Council), RSPCA and ASC certified labels.
  • Where by probable, pick out organically-farmed seafood as this tends to allow for fish more motion house and makes use of responsibly-sourced feed.
  • Examine out the Maritime Conservation Culture Excellent Fish Manual or app for an up-to-day rating procedure on the sustainability of more than one hundred fifty different species of fish all above the earth – go for environmentally friendly, limit amber and steer clear of pink.
  • Continue to keep educated about the issues going through our seas by frequently going to the Maritime Stewardship Council internet site.
  • Obtain British items to enable minimize the food stuff miles from h2o to plate.
  • When consuming fish out, enquire about which menu choices have been sourced closest to your dining site.
  • Get chatting with area fishmongers to preserve up to day on seasonal selections, fish sourcing insurance policies, vacation miles and cooking guidelines (F.E. Tucker and Sons cell fish van, Potter Avenue Fishmongers and supermarket fish counters).
  • Keep away from binning any edible fish by preserving on top rated of use-by dates, freezing choices ahead of they go off, obtaining and cooking only what you need and incorporating modern leftovers into tomorrow’s meals.
  • Lower again on plastic as reducing usage on land will help to minimize the plastic floating in our waters. Say no, reuse or minimize.
  • When you are going to the coast (or the River Stort!), set apart a modest amount of time for a thoroughly clean-up. Glance out for organised Nationwide Trust and MSC activities.
  • A huge cause of micro plastics sinking into our oceans is from auto tyre flakes. Whenever probable, stroll, cycle or get community transportation.
  • Require and educate children so that they master to respect the ocean from day dot and tactfully unfold these good messages to your spouse and children, buddies and colleagues and on social media.

The F.E. Tucker and Sons mobile fish van visits Bishop’s Stortford every Thursday, Friday and Saturday (34776947)
The F.E. Tucker and Sons cell fish van visits Bishop’s Stortford every Thursday, Friday and Saturday (34776947)

Alex’s area deal with: Tucker’s fish van in Bishop’s Stortford

F.E. Tucker & Sons is a 3rd generation business that has been up and sailing considering that 1956. They very own the oldest cell fish units in East Anglia and have viewed the standard sector town streets of Bishop’s Stortford evolve above the previous 42 a long time.

Trevor and his sons, Andrew and Daren, are passionate about giving top-quality-excellent seafood right from the coast which is often months fresher than supermarket choices.

They are dependent in Good Yarmouth and pride on their own on ninety nine% of the fish they provide getting sourced straight from British waters. Not only this, but they can inform you who caught the lobsters and dressed the crabs!

With the ocean as their office, this father-and-sons collaboration can enable manual you in direction of seasonal and sustainable choices every thirty day period of the year. Plaice is a excellent preference to plate up for your fish supper. It is multipurpose and can be baked with a squeeze of lemon, delicately combined into a fish stew or stir fried along with pak choi.

Get yourself the catch of the day on Thursdays, Fridays or Saturdays exterior Host in Stortford (ditch the plastic wrap and consider a Tupperware box).

Ingredients for Alex's flexible fish cakes (34776972)
Components for Alex’s flexible fish cakes (34776972)

Alex’s recipe for flexible fish cakes

With inventory shortages, shelf wipe-outs and store cupboard dinners, now is a time for adaptable recipes that use a tiny to go a prolonged way.

(serves four)


  • 600g potatoes, peeled and slice into chunks
  • three tbsp chopped clean herbs, e.g. parsley, coriander, dill, basil
  • two x 120g cans sardines in olive oil, drained (or very similar amount of any tinned fish)
  • 1 modest lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1 modest pink chilli, deseeded and chopped finely (or ½ tsp dried chilli flakes)
  • Basic flour
  • two tbsp rapeseed oil


  1. Carry a significant pan of h2o to the boil. Insert the potato chunks and cook for about fifteen-twenty minutes till tender
  2. In the meantime, drain the sardines and mash them in a bowl
  3. Combine in the chopped herbs, lemon zest and juice, and finely chopped pink chilli
  4. When the potatoes are cooked, drain them and mash till smooth
  5. Stir the sardine combine into the mash potato
  6. Divide the mixture into 8 even-sized balls (at the time interesting ample to cope with)
  7. With flour-dusted arms, condition the balls into fish cakes and evenly flour both of those sides
  8. Warmth a single tbsp of rapeseed oil in a significant frying pan and cook four of the fish cakes for about five minutes on just about every side
  9. Repeat with the remaining four fish cakes and serve along with salad or vegetables

Read through ALSO Alex Talks Food plan: Targeted traffic mild procedure to enable you set the brakes on way too much salt + my hidden wholefoods heaven in Stortford + make your very own inventory from vegetable scraps

Read through ALSO Alex Talks Food plan: I want my enthusiasm for healthful consuming to bear fruit with Bishop’s Stortford Independent viewers

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