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Fish and stuff and how not to eat them...
Member Name: thedevilinme
Advantages: Easy to prepare!
Disadvantages: Razor sharp ring pull tin openers
So what a hypocrite our Gordon Ramsey is. 18 months ago he went shark fishing in Florida and caught some beauties, then, six months later, has the audacity to present an undercover show from the Far East where he shows his displeasure towards the mass slaughter of sharks around the world to make the Chinese delicacy of shark fin soup. So it's ok for TV chefs to fish for shark on their day off but not for Chinese fisherman to seek a subsistence living? It is unclear what Ramsey's point was and who advised him to do the documentary, especially as he serves stuff like 'Foie gras' in his rapidly shrinking restaurant chain, a delicacy created by force feeding ducks to balloon up their livers with fat to give them more taste. This is not the first time in recent years that Ramsey been exposed as a hypocrite. Last year he was caught out by the tabloids for ordering in pre-cooked food to his swanky restaurant chain that has no problem serving it at home cooked prices, the thing that Ramsay rails against most when trying to turn around failing restaurants on his TV show.
The shark fin soup, of course, is very expensive and taken as a delicacy in Chinese restaurants around the world, and illegal in many other countries, like the UK. Ramsay, of course, has money troubles like those hard working Vietnamese fisherman and desperately trying to remodel himself as the caring non swearing cook (insert asterisk) with documentaries like this, Jamie Oliver wining back all the ground he lost to the pseudo Scott, Jamie's 30 minute Recipie book the fastest selling cookbook ever in Britain! In the documentary it appears to show some illegal Chinese shark fisherman throwing petrol on his straw barnet from high above from a grubby housing block in Taiwan. But it later transpires that this water and an elaborate set up so he could get his hair transplant done and blame 'petrol damage'.
~Shark Fin Soup Recipe~
Mindlessly slaughter sharks and toss them back in the water without fins. Place fin in watery soup and charge vulgar Japanese people $70 per bowl. I have had this 'delicacy' in San Francisco and it tastes like nothing in particular but supposed to bring wealth and good happiness, according to tradition, which it certainly does for the shipmasters that catch it. Disgusting!
There was a far more enjoyable and credible little documentary on BBC2 around the same time about the fishing industry in Alaska, a far more regulated and relaxed affair. It followed a cosy family business located in one of the many beautiful inlets up there in the northern wilderness, the water bubbling with abundant and willing wild Alaskan salmon ready to jump into the nets. Apparently the family earn an amazing amount of money doing it, the season just three months long so not too much hard work for their reward, the family pulling in $7 million dollars from their four boats in those 16-20 weeks of the year. Even the kids in school could rake in a $1000 per day to pay it's that lucrative, college paid for in one summer. I'm seriously thinking about heading up there next year to try and make a few quid. Of course we didn't get to see the boats crewed by third world migrants on $50 per day for the same wealthy captains but encouraging all the same that fish can be taken sensibly when quotas are agreed.
~ Salmon Surprise Recipe ~
Take one tin of half sized salmon and then open it with a tin opener. Flood the container with vinegar like the Japanese are those reactors with sea water and dive in there with the fork. In just 30 seconds you have an ideal snack that can be created between injury delays during football on the telly!
Sadly some tuna species have been fished to near exhaustion, the Blue Fin one of the unlucky ones. These huge silver fish are revered in places like Japan and almost a tradable commodity; they are so rare these days. The Mediterranean is the key source in the world right now and although some EU quotas are in place, that scarcity just drives up the fishes value and so encourages illegal fishing, a big Blue Fin worth $30,000 dollars, meaning catching a couple a day is enough to make nice living thank you very much. Some savvy Japanese banks have bought stock in these fisheries and then tried to buy up the Blue Fin reserves to drive up the prices even more, the fish being held in ports in Japan in giant freezers uneaten and gathering value. The Blue fin situation is the destiny of all species of fish who humans take a liking to.
~Tuna Fish Sandwich Eating~
Take two slices of thin cut bread and butter them up nice. Open a tin of Tuna chunks in brine and plonk one quarter of it on to the bread. Do not buy those ring pull tuna tins as you could easily cut your finger off. They are lethal! Now get the vinegar out and sprinkle liberally. Press it all together and munch away!
For some reason we only ever eat Cod or Haddock here in Britain, even though there are hundreds of fish types out there in the oceans we could eat. In America 80% of their Cod is imported from around the world as they have over-fished their own waters. The 20% they do catch off their shores is often caught and packaged by foreign crews, the canneries also packed full of non Americans. They actually import nearly all of they ate these days. But traditional British fish n chips is scrummy when done right and make sure you have the salt and vinagre to hand.
~ Fish n Chips Eating ~
It has to be taken as a takeaway, preferably from the paper provided, soaking up that access vinagre. There's nothing like fish n chips at the seaside.
~ Fish Finger Sandwich ~
This is not page seventy-five of the new edition of the Karma Sutra but a classic bachelor meal. Take four fish fingers of any brand and put them in the microwave for two minutes. Butter two pieces of bread and place the fish fingers in the bread. Press them together and then smother in mint sauce or vinegar!
WE have an absurd situation in nearly all European Union waters where fisherman have to throw back up to 50% of their catch to meet quotas so to preserve fish stocks, fish stocks they just sweep over the side dead.. It's because they deep-sea trawl to catch enough fish to make a profit on the trip and so inevitably they catch all sorts. But under the rules they also had to throw back fish they were trying to catch, this, apparently, to help preserve fish stocks. Problem is they were brushing dead and dying fish off the deck and back into the ocean, doing nothing to replenish stocks. The good news is the EU have acted and moved to ban the process of over-fishing to deter throw back, Mackerel the biggest victim of this extraordinary waste and hypocrisy. There are simple too many permits and not enough sustainable fish stock, EU fishing centric countries unyielding when it comes to giving up those permits.
Mackerel is an oily fish and so not one of our most popular snacks from the sea. If you grill them up they ejaculate all manner of fluids and stink the kitchen up for the next month. Even wrapped in foil they flavour your cooking for that month. I'm a kipper man myself and so prefer that type of oily fish to be smoked and dry. You can't eat more than one oily fish though as it stays on your throat for ages, soon finding your tummy. If I'm going to have a Mackerel I tend to cook pasta with it so I can mash it up and absorb that oily.
Lobster and Crab
One of the ironies of over-fishing is that continuing depletion of our basic fish stock like Cod and Halibut has driven up the prices, yet has made lobster and crayfish much cheaper in the shops as that population has exploded because of the unbalance created in the oceans through trawling. The Cod is an apparent predator of the great oceans eco systems and so less of those means recovery for other fish populations, lobsters absolutely exploding around the world.
Molluscs like Lobster and Crayfish are lovely when cooked and boiled just right although all rather cruel when you see them fished out of tanks in restaurants to be cooked there and then, much tastier when they are cooked fresh. But because they are ugly buggers the animal rights lot don't seem concerned over such cruelty. If that was a dolphin going into a huge boiling vat my word there would be a fuss. It's save the Whales but not the molluscs, straight in the pot without a student or hippy in sight!
~ Lobster Eating~
My best lobster experience was in Las Vegas, an all you can eat night at Ceasers Palace to be precise, literally as many lobsters you can get down you for $10. I can recall the very plate now, seven of those pink red beasts piled up like those beacon fires on Lord of the Rings. They are very crunchy beasts but if cooked just right they melt in your mouth. The tail is the nicest bit and then the under belly and you can eat the whole thing if you don't mind bits of tentacles all over your bib. The claw is the toughest bit to eat and so only for experts.
Prawns are lovely; whatever method you eat them by. They are common on our sea shores and you only need boil them up straight from the sea with some butter and mint and you are away. I'm not a big fan of muscles and oysters as those guys primary job is to sit around all day cleaning sea water, which near our shores tends to mean they are stuck on the end of sewer pipes. As a kid you knew these things could hum and when you went rock-pooling you would find them all over the place. Those prawn sticks in Sainsbury's are scummy though!
-Snails and Eels-
The French eat them so exactly why you shouldn't. They taste dire, squelch and horrible like licking a slug. The French would eat those two if they had enough energy to catch them. Eels should not be eaten, end of.
So, I failed to deliver any decent recipes but had my opinion on fish. That's because I'm a bloke and we see food as sustenance and little more, no reason to dress it up as we shovel it in. Women like things to look pretty and so enjoy recipes and flavour more. This is why women dust and men don't. Dust goes up....dust comes down.....! Guys buy TV meals as there is no hassle. Fish taste ok in TV meals. Meat does not. All meat based ready meals from those plastic trays taste exactly the same, as does that horrid sauce.
Summary: Please take this as tongue in cheek
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