William Black, chef and author of a range of books (including “The Land That Thyme Forgot”) first made his name with a book that introduced some fabulous fish recipes whilst writing consciously about sustainability. You might also recognise him from the award-winning TV series Matters of Taste. With over a quarter of a century specialising in fish, he arrived on Ibiza in May to conduct a Fish Cooking class.
So it was that at 10am one bright sunny morning I found myself in the village of Sant Joan, at the newly opened (and frankly, super!) fish shop.
William was delightfully informative, talking the class through the attributes of all the fish on offer.
Not without some good humour, he teased us with Monkfish teeth (vicious looking!) and taught us how to avoid poisoning ourselves when handling Scorpion fish – a twinkle in his eye as a few of us may have squirmed.
In keeping with his own background and passion, he offered easy guidelines on how to recognise the freshness of the produce on offer and the sustainability of the various breeds (I
had no idea that Mediterranean Tuna was at risk!)
With his easy confidence, he then helped the class to choose their fish for the days cooking.
Travelling to the beautiful villa Can Amonita (San Lorenzo), the relaxed but educational (and often entertaining) instruction continued, with William showing us all how to prepare the fish (and squid) that had been purchased, eliciting more than a few ‘wow’s from us all in the process.
Effortlessly preparing a fish soup before moving on to deal with monkfish and squid our attention was absolute. It is perhaps here that I should admit that I enjoy fish dishes enormously but have never had the courage to consider buying fresh fish and preparing it. Indeed I wouldn’t have known where to start but within the course of the day, those former fears evaporated. It was extremely empowering to learn how to select fish and what on earth to do with it afterwards.
Of course, the proof is the eating (or that’s my excuse and I am sticking to it!) and within just a few short hours, we found ourselves sitting down to lunch and enjoying the mornings efforts, starting first with the fabulous fish soup, followed by BBQ’ed monkfish, cuttlefish and fresh squid – all included in the price of the days course.
William will be returning to Ibiza in October to conduct the next course and if interested, I’d book early as places are limited but the day is highly recommended!
I in the meantime, shall be showing off my new fish preparing knowledge at every available opportunity.
For further information and to book your place in October, contact Ammonite Arte directly.
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