Thursday, August 5, 2010

Purdy's Fishery, an Epic tour!

The Purdy's Store Front
(I took this shot as I pulled in. It's shot #7 of 8.
I had balancing issues.
I imagine the staff inside where wondering if this Royal York kid had ever seen a store front before...)

A boat with nets.

Mike and Jerek.
Two burly fishermen of the high seas.
I am over-reaching a little.
Purdy's is of course a seasonal venture when bringing in their own catch. I have been lucky enough to try the Whitefish, Pickerel, and Perch that they bring in when the timing is right. Nothing compares to day-caught in season fish.

Things you should not stuff your hand into #1!

The Scaler.
Fish have scales. This removes 99% of them.

Things you should not stuff your hand into #2

21st Century Fish Guillotine!
When you have 800 lbs of Perch coming in at a time, it's best to have help with a machine like this if you plan to sell your fish later on that day.

Things you should not stuff your hand into #3

The Spine Riper-Outer and Fillet Separator
(I am making up the names, but this is the function)

Purdy's Lake Huron Perch!

Caught that day, and after all the drama the fish have gone through, they come out looking like this. From here, a worker will clean up any impurities and this product is sold counter-top or at their Fish&Chip place attached to the fisheries.

A worker cleaning what I think, for a fisheries, really was already spotless in the first place.

The Fish Fry
It took me 1 hour to fry up 4 lbs. of Beer Battered Perch in this 40 year old fryer. It rocked. Beer, Fish, and Frying always does though.
Beer Batter
2 Cups A.P. Flour
2 Tbs. Kosher Salt
2 Tbs. Baking Powder
500ml. Beer (Use the stuff you hate, but is in the back of your fridge anyways because someone left a couple bottles after a party. Bud, Molson, anything mass produced...)
1) Mix dry ingredients. Pour the beer into the dry. You may not need all of it. It should be thick like plaster. Do not over whip, it should still be clumpy.
2) Dredge the dry fish in flour, salt and pepper. Dip into the batter, slowly introduce the fish into the fryer, holding on to it for about ten seconds until it floats. Fry @ 375F until golden and delicious.

For years, I have been making semi-annual jaunts down to Sarnia, Ontario for family purposes. Usually, I find myself at the Farmer's Market , where my Father-In-Law and I go trolling for seasonal ingredients to bring to the dinner table.
The last time I was there I noticed Purdy's had their own booth and upon closer inspection found out they are based in Point Edward, right next to Sarnia.
So I made myself known to the purveyors, Mike and Stephanie Purdy. They let me check out their shop and pepper them with questions for what must have seemed hours to them when it could not have been more then two tops.
After playing the curious, over staying house guest, I happily left with 4 lbs. of wicked that-day-caught Lake Huron Perch and went back to my Italian-Canadian enclave to commence a successful fish-fry.

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