Monday, 6 September 2010

The Ultimate Sustainable Seafood? - Chow

photo credit NOAA

"At Miya's Sushi in New Haven, Connecticut, Chef Bun Lai serves European flat oysters with Sichuan pepper, lime, soy, and daikon relish; grilled moon snails; batter-fried Asian shore crabs; and raw slices of lionfish with sake-soy sauce, roasted seaweed flakes, toasted sesame seeds, and chives. It might be the only menu of its kind in the country: He calls it the Long Island Sound Invasive Species Menu."

Well if that doesn't give me a reason to visit my hometown...I've been meaning to try lionfish. But I just adore moon snails - I could never.

We've all been hearing a lot about the decline of popular commercial fish species such as tuna, salmon and cod while invasive species such as lionfish and Asian carp explode and cause problems such as feeding off the young of many more vulnerable species. Some believe it would be a great solution to switch and eat the invasive, overpopulated species instead. Hmm...

Lionfish has been gaining popularity recently, as people have been discovering it's actually quite delicious. The set back is those huge beautiful spines that give them their name. Get stuck by one and you'll be feeling it. For this reason fishermen don't typically bring them in to shore.

Another fish to go from pesky pest to delicious dining is the Asian carp. Although it has been found hard to fillet - and as a result is expensive - the fish has been successful when served at restaurants and is already being exported as food to China. America - hang on to some! Cook up some fish!!

There is a concern that in fishing for an invasive species, it too will actually become overfished and eventually endangered.

"It seems impossibly far off to think that the supply of Asian carp could run out, but what if it does and there is still money to be made and stomachs grumbling for it? Would the fish be farmed? And escape? Again? "Then we have the problem all over," Chef Phillip Foss says."

What do you think? Is eating invasive fish species the ultimate sustainable seafood?

Full article here (Chow)

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