When I buy prepared frozen seafood entrees, it is usually on a whim. I’m in a rush, hungry, and there is nothing in the house. I’ve seen this line of frozen entrees at a local grocery store, and I’ve been curious. The brand is Captain Marden’s Seafoods, and I have only seen them in this particular store instead of the regular supermarket. My wife is pretty much a pescatarian who is “selective” about shellfish, so I picked out the Haddock Au Gratin and Haddock with Herb Dressing. For six bucks apiece for a haddock dinner, how can I say no?
About Captain Marden’s Seafoods
According to the company website, Captain Marden’s started as a retail fish market in the Boston suburbs in 1945. Today the family run company has a restaurant, fish market, catering and of course, a line of frozen entrees. What excited me most is that they say they buy their fish in Gloucester and Boston, so I’m somewhat familiar with who is catching and selling the fish I’ll be eating. Not only is the captain a real guy, but he’s also still at the helm at the young age of 100 as of 2022!
The Packaging and Product
The unassuming packaging and the fact that it is a local product makes me think that maybe it’s a cut above some of the other stuff I’ve tried. The fairly spartan 3-color box is for some reason very “New England” to me. Nothing fancy yet suggesting to the consumer that they don’t need fancy packaging, because it’s that good. They have several different options in sizes for either one or two, so I chose two of the one-person servings. Out of the box the servings were between 7-9 oz, which seems reasonable for the price.
Preparing Captain Marden’s Haddock
There is nothing to do but follow the instructions on the box, starting with removing the plastic film. The fish looked good in the cooking tray and smelled good through the 55-minute cook-from-frozen process.
I thought the Haddock au Gratin tasted pretty good, definitely a step up from your typical frozen seafood entree. However, the Haddock with Herb Dressing came out a little dry after all that cooking time. Even with lots of lemon, it seemed dried out. The box I picked out might have spent too much time in the freezer. Someone more familiar with the product suggested next time I cook it a lower temperature than suggested on the box.
So, I guess my first experience was sort of a mixed bag, but pretty good overall. Captain Marden’s is a good quality seafood brand with an interesting line up of products. If you want to learn more, check out my review of their delicious Finnan Haddie entree.