The Seamark business is well known in Manchester for both its headquarters in the east of the city as well as for being responsible for probably its most expensively built and designed restaurant – Vermillion.
Now the global business is taking both the story of its success and the recipes which grace the plates of the restaurant to new audiences with a book that’s just been published to raise money for charity.
Called ‘Seamark bringing fruits of the ocean to your plate‘ the 150 page book is a mixture of business history and cookbook with enough food photography to make it a coffee table read.
The early pages detail the Ahmed brother’s ‘story of determination’ in building a business which is today a £150m operation.
“In 1984, with a £100,000 credit facility, the brothers set about capitalising on Britain’s growing taste for seafood and began importing prawns from their home nation of Bangladesh.”
Then we move onto recipes from Vermillion which starts with a useful glossary of spices and herbs used in Thai cooking. There’s easy to follow instructions on dishes which many people will already be familiar with eating such as as tempura prawns, salt and pepper squid or salmon tikka.
But there’s some more unusual dishes too including several pages on spicy salads and a black prawn curry recipe from a Thailand’s northern jungles where coconut milk isn’t used.
Some of the ingredients might be tricky to source outside major cities but largely they include items such as oyster sauce and Kaffir leaves which are easily found in supermarkets or online.
I’m looking forward to trying out the Nile perch with Thai pepper sauce which uses green peppercorns and includes instructions for a butter rice accompaniment.
* The book costs £9.95 with all proceeds going to the Iqbal Ahmed Foundation which was set up to help people in developing countries through education, training, housing and healthcare. At present it can be purchased from the website and should be in the Amazon store in coming weeks.