Fish, Fish And More Fish

Fish, Fish And More Fish

This time I’m in Pensacola to judge a fish meal contest! What’s interesting about this contest is that the contestants are cooking the fish that they caught themselves. All fresh and delicious. I arrived kinda early, so I had my moments to talk with the fishermen cooks to get them to know a little better.

Some of them were hobbyists, the other were veteran fishers. I was curious to see that one lad had some kind of sonar devices by himself. I asked him “what’s that thing?”, and he told me it’s a fish finder – device to help find where the fish folk hang in the water. I’m always amazed what people might invent in order to make their lives easier. Cool!

Some time later the contestants arrived with three bags of fish to choose and cook with. I could smell the cooking process of the fish and saw many diverse ingredients being used. This was a promising start!

Shrimp Dishes

The first contest dealt with shrimp and I needed to judge each dish on taste, texture, presentation and uniqueness. The first dish I tried was shrimp and calamari salad with Vidalia lemon dressing. I loved the combination of the shrimp and calamari and the dressing had a tangy taste to it.

After that I tried the shrimp and smoked salmon mini pot pies and I couldn’t get enough of those. I tried the shrimp and green bell pepper wraps in whole wheat pita pockets but I wasn’t crazy about them. In the end I voted for the shrimp mini pot pies and I really hope the contestant decides to sell them in stores nationwide because they taste great.


to eat or not to eat that is the questionThe only thing I don’t like about trout is all of the bones in them but overall trout is a good fish to have. I tried a baked trout with Indian pineapple curry and it was served with fingerling potatoes. I thought this was very delicious and I wanted seconds. The next trout dish I sampled was trout and oyster gumbo, and since I’m from Louisiana I was eager to eat it.I must say I was a bit skeptical but actually it tasted wonderful. Finally, I tried the smoked trout with roasted white corn and pickle salsa and of all the trout dishes, this was the most amazing. I voted for this dish in the trout contest.


You can do so much with crabmeat and that’s why I cook with it a lot. The first crabmeat dish I tried was the crabmeat burgers on foccaccia bread and it was interesting. The next crabmeat dish I ate was crabmeat inside of chicken broth-flavored gelatin molds with onion dip. This was a little taxing because I actually hate savory gelatin but I love fruit gelatin.


Overall the fish contest was fantastic and I had a great time judging the meals. As a food judge I get to attend and participate in different contests throughout the year. Some contests are more exciting than others but overall I love what I do. Sometimes I have to spend quite a bit of time in the CrossFit gym doing WODs from CrossFitWay but I’m not obsessed with weight control. As long as I have good health overall I’m not worried. The best part is that I can attend these contests for free.