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Posts Tagged ‘seafood’

The smell of the sea. Hustle and bustle as rowdy customers move closer to their prize. The satisfaction of de-shelling a fresh prawn in the morning sunshine as the hungry seagulls circle overhead.

Sydney Fish Market is my favourite weekend treat. Picking up the freshest fish, deciding which mouthwatering recipe to try out and serving up the results that night. It’s a day-long affair and one of the most enjoyable things to do in Sydney.

The fish market itself now offers lots more than just fish – there’s a fresh deli to start. With cheeses, cooked meats or specialist pantry goods. You can grab a coffee and a baked treat from the mini cafe. There’s also a greengrocers with fresh fruit and veg.

Here’s my trip to the Sydney fish market in images….and the results of my visit that evening in the form of a Sydney-style Spanish Paella…..

Oyster-shucking at the market

One of the larger fishes I spotted

fresh fish to eat at the market

Seagulls tear apart a piece of discarded fish

Fish on ice

Ling fish

Plus, everything else on offer at the market:

Deli cheese

Deli meats

Trying to avoid purchasing any of this..

Finally, the results of my shopping trip….

The final results….a delicious paella

And some sangria with fruits from the on-site greengrocer

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Palm Beach aka Summer Bay

Palm Beach aka Summer Bay

I think Australian daytime soaps have a lot to answer for.

As an ‘80s child in rainy Britain, I grew up on afternoons of Neighbours and Home and Away, glued to the land down under where every day was spent on the beach and summer was always the season.

Twenty years later, and now living in Australia, I took a trip out to see the real Summer Bay, located just an hour’s drive north of Sydney at Palm Beach, to see for myself this glorious world.

The soaps are deceptive. The ‘year-round summer’ you see in Home and Away is a manipulated form of the real weather. Whilst the sky might be clear and bright, it can get windy, really windy. And, for our trip (in Australia’s spring time) the wind was positively chilly. I don’t envy the actors having to stroll along the beach in their swimwear, giving the impression on screen of hot temperatures.

There’s really not that much to see at Palm Beach, apart from the beach itself.  The area is surprisingly uncommercialised. Forget a barrage of memorabilia to cash in on the beach’s fame. A simple display stand on a wall shows a limited range of souvenirs with a few notes printed from a type-writer about the area. They’re faded in the sun, really unprofessional looking and quite easy to miss.

The only place for food and drink directly on the beach is a run-down kiosk selling instant coffee in polystyrene cups and a small selection of tired looking fast food.

Palm Beach kiosk

The tired looking kiosk area at Palm Beach

Whilst the adjoining surf club is fully-operable, it’s not open to the public, and the only nod to the soap is a sign stating that the Club Official is one ‘A.Stewart.’

Summer Bay Surf Club

Summer Bay Surf Lifesaving Club

After a nice walk along the beach, the obligatory photo taking, our trip to Palm Beach was over fairly quickly.

Interestingly my Lonely Planet Australia guide (2009 edition) barely mentions Palm Beach at all, just one sentence under a ‘Northern Beaches’ heading. Now I can start to see why.

I will go back, but in a few months once it’s warmed up.

Instead, we spent the afternoon a short walk away, drinking great wine and eating some delicious seafood at Beach Road restaurant, one of just a handful of eateries in the vicinity. It was worth the trip alone.

Below is the ‘Beach Road maritime mezze’ which is for two people to share and is highly recommended. Try and catch an afternoon when the acoustic band are playing on the grassed area too.

Beach Road seafood

Beach Road restaurant Maritime Mezze

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