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  • Writer's pictureGeorgia Hammond

I'd rather be fishing.

Fishing is the perfect activity for someone like me, who enjoys being by the river but isn't very good at standing still. I have always loved fishing, from as early as I can remember. These days I go to the river a couple times a week, always hoping to bring back dinner but not disappointed if I don't. Worst case scenario the dogs get a nice walk and a swim and I work on my tan.

The Klondike river is just down the road and across the highway from my house, a short walk down the highway there's a path to the side of a shallow channel and for the last two summers it has provided grayling more often than not. A decent size grayling is just enough fish for two for dinner: no leftovers, storing, or preserving necessary. I make a point of putting effort into grayling dinners, it's important to me to not take these abundant little fish for granted for a number of reasons. First of all, let's face it, taking an animal out of its otherwise peaceful life and putting it on your plate is a jerk move and shouldn't be taken lightly. Second, we gave up commercial meat two years ago so having fish for dinner is a real treat and feels like an occasion. Third, fresh fish is versatile and provides so much opportunity for creativity; grayling are small and cook very quickly, leaving time for prep and sides.

This is also a wonderful time of year for fish dinners, the garden is producing a variety of herbs, salad greens, and side vegetables that pair perfectly with fish in any preparation. Below are some recent grayling dinners, I'd love to hear what other people are cooking up these days. What kind of fish do you catch? How do you prepare it?

Baked grayling with purple basil pesto, lemon, and haskap salt flakes. Sides: kale, fireweed, and calendula salad with spruce tip and birch syrup vinaigrette. Garden zucchini with Kokopelli Farm onion.

Lightly smoked grayling with spruce tip salt and arugula. Sides: cucumber and borage salad (sour cream and spruce tip vinegar dressing). Potato chips with sea salt and garden dill.

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