During Week Four our citizen scientists made over 130 different market visits! While not everyone was able to find their fish about 68 percent of participants found at least one of their assigned species and cooked up some delicious meals! Many participants used this week as a good opportunity to try new species such as periwinkles, butterfish, and Jonah crabs for the first time!
Lisa Jarosik from Connecticut
"When I went to the market, there were two kinds of swordfish. One was from Vietnam, which I could not choose, and the other from New England waters. The Vietnamese swordfish was smaller and cost less. I was told it came already cut and frozen. The more expensive swordfish is brought in as one large loin and then cut into pieces which looked so much more appetizing. It was definitely worth the extra money. I would buy it again and enjoy it on a nice summer evening outside."
Craig Gogan from Rhode Island
"We have seen local pollock week after week, glad it was on our list for week 4. We decided to make a chowder with ocean quahogs and the pollock with a side of fried clams (we used steamers). Everything was very easy to cook and made a nice hearty meal with plenty of extra. The price was low $7.99/lb and it could easily be used in a variety of recipes calling for white fish. We will definitely buy pollock again."
Rachel Hutchinson from Massachusetts
"This was the first week that I had a repeat fish on my fish list, I had previously located Dab, and had been unable to locate Dogfish last week as it was not yet in season. Again I made an assumption this week when I went to the market, I knew that Dogfish was not yet being landed, and thought that maybe I would be able to once again locate Dab. I had not seen Pollock yet in the market, and although I know surf clams are being landed locally I had not seen them in the market yet.
I had a incredible busy week this week and wasn't able to swing into my usually fish markets during the week so I started my search on Sunday afternoon. My first stop was Cape Fish and Lobster in Hyannis, a fully stocked fish market featuring many locally caught products. Unfortunately, they had nothing I was looking for, while explaining my search and that finding nothing was a success as well I got talking to the fishmongers. "No dogfish was not coming in yet, but would be soon, they did have gallon buckets of surf clam in the back for restaurants to make chowder, and they do have Dab that comes through the store, but usually goes right out to restaurants." He ran back to see if there was any Dab left, most had been shipped out, and what was left he didn't think was good enough to sell me. On to store number 2.
My second stop was Ring Brothers in Dennis, they have a counter run by Chatham Fish and Lobster with-in the store. No dogfish- No Surf Clam- No Dab, but YES Pollock labeled Locally Caught. Asking about it the fish monger thought it was landed in Chatham. Again we got to talking "whats the project? oh how cool? what are you supposed to do?". I have been shocked to always find fishmongers who have been interested and want to talk about the product, that makes me happy. As we got talking he mentioned that he doesn't understand why people still come in looking to by Cod for things like tacos when there is delicious locally caught Pollock available. Tacos---- well that is what got stuck in my mind. At this point it was Sunday evening and I wanted to make something quick and easy for dinner, tacos sounded like a great idea. I easily cut the Pollock into nice taco sized pieces, dreaded them in a cornmeal and fried them in a little bit of oil. Fried up added to a taco with a little homemade Salsa Verde and lettuce was a perfect easy dinner. The fish was meaty, flaky and delicious. I wouldn't hesitate to purchase this fish again and am excited to try cooking in a different way if provided the opportunity."
Mary Tanzer from New Hampshire
"I have never had Jonah crab before. I had to buy a two pound bag and decided to try a few different things. I had some claws steamed with chive butter on the side, made some very yummy crab cakes with the bits of meat I picked off the remaining claws. And I cooked up the shells and cartilage to make a crab stock to use in the future. I was proud to make the most of my crab claws!"
Christine Devito from Maine
Carolynn St. Jean Gogan from Rhode Island
"My husband and I have had monkfish before so we knew that it really doesn't have a strong taste. So we cooked it using butter, lemon juice , white wine, capers, minced garlic and cherry tomatoes with a sprinkling of fresh parsley. Anything in that mixture will taste great and it did make a fine dinner. We did find on the internet that you should remove the fine layer of skin on the fillet and that took some effort. Just invest in a good fillet knife."
Aubrey Church from Massachusetts
"Haddock, Spot and Blue Crab. I was unable to find spot and blue crab anywhere near by, and had already picked Haddock for week 2. As a result, I chose #Cod for week 4. Atlantic Cod is one of the most important commercial fish species in North America’s eastern coast. In recent years, cod has become a poster child for commercial overfishing. Scientists, government officials, fishermen, fishery managers, and consumers all have an important task of focusing on strategies for the long-term sustainability of this species. In U.S. waters, cod is most commonly found on Georges Bank and in the western Gulf of Maine. While Cod is still found on many New England menus and at local seafood markets, cod is only a small part of the story. There is a plethora of seafood available in New England, and consumers should be willing and daring to branch out from the norm. I encourage you to substitute Cod for other species such as haddock, flounder, pollock, halibut, sole or any other thick white fish. Fun fact: Historically, cod was so abundant off New England that early explorers like Bartholomew Gosnold, an English explorer in 1602, named Cape Cod for the fish. Tonight’s dinner was roasted cod with basil and tomatoes on garlic toasts, with a side of zucchini. Follow along for next week’s #fishtale #sacredcod #incodwetrust #eatingwiththeecosystem #eatfish #knowyourfish #supportlocalfishermen #eatlocal"
Deborah Majer from Connecticut
"Periwinkles are very easy to prepare and have so much more flavor than canned snails for escargot. I had never tried periwinkles before so I made them escargot style in mushroom caps. Although they were very good preparing them this way did not do them justice. Next time I will stir fry them in a spicy sauce and serve them in the shell as an appetizer. They are great to just sit and pick them out like we do with blue crabs."
Daryl Popper from Massachusetts
"I traveled to Nantucket at the tail end of a lively holiday weekend with high hopes of discovering my assigned species. I visited 167 Raw fish market on the island after sampling their tasty shucked oysters at the Cisco Brewery popup. I learned that it was actually the first day in weeks with no haddock. Next round Nantucket! Back to the big city, I strolled to the Dewey Square Farmer's Market in downtown Boston to visit the dynamic team at Red's Best. Haddock was readily available and packaged seamlessly to maintain freshness. I love fish tacos and prepared these delicate filets with a coconut, herb crust served with seasonal greens from Kimball Farm and served on organic heirloom corn tortillas from Hadley, Massachusetts."
David Ford from Rhode Island
The Local Catch in Point Judith, RI is my go to seafood retail outlet. I usually buy fish from them every week, whether it is on my list for the week or not. This week the sea scallops I bought were advertised as "Block Island Sound" scallops. I have had them many times before and they are the highest quality scallops I have found. I steamed the scallops and followed a recipe that was in the Wall Street Journal on June 1st: "Scallops With Avocado Puree". Heavenly!
Christina Rodriguez from Rhode Island
"We have been feeding fish to our friends weekly since this started and it's getting ridiculous. They just love that we're doing this and sharing new recipes with them, but I swear to God they should be kicking in for this!"
Chris Dodge from Connecticut
"Whole butterfish were quite the interesting experience, and I really enjoyed my first attempt at cooking and eating whole fish and doing it with a brand new species for me. I expected these to a be a lot fishier and honestly gross, but I was pleasantly surprised. Check out my blog: http://talesofamarinescientist.blogspot.com/2017/06/eat-like-fish-week-4-one-fish-two-fish.html"
Rindy Sicard from Rhode Island
"I've eaten haddock in restaurants, but never made it at home. I liked the meatiness and mild flavor of this fish very much, and will buy again. Although I used an easy cooking method, I didn't want to complicate the flavor with a sauce."
Andrea McCarthy from Connecticut
"This week my fish list included whiting, haddock, spiny dogfish, and white hake. I was only able to find haddock from New Bedford, MA. Haddock inhabit deep, cool waters and are demersal fish meaning the fish live and feed on or near the bottom of a body of water. Haddock is a white fish that is used as an alternative to Atlantic cod when the cod stocks have declined. The fillets were sautéed and garnished with fresh dill. The flakes were large, firm but soft. It tasted superb."
Debbie Proffitt from Rhode Island
"I was very happy to have a rainy Monday holiday and my fish list this week! It gave me time to research the four species, to shop for them and prepare my selection. Tasks that are a little harder during a crazy work week. Week 4 for me included Tautog (aka Blackfish), Sea Scallop (not Bay Scallop), Haddock and Summer Flounder. I could not find Tautog but I did find the other three species and in the end chose Haddock because I had a recipe I wanted to try. But my research taught me that Tautog is an excellent tasting bottom feeding fish, May through June are the best months to find this fish. Massachusetts and RI seem to be the only region in New England where it is not overfished. It is easy to catch and slow growing so it is highly susceptible to overfishing and is slow to rebuild. Sea Scallop's are one of my favorites and I eat them all the time so I didn't choose them. I learned that they are one of the most valuable fisheries in the US. Although recent high landings and an unknown biomass in the Northern Gulf of Maine are causing some concerns about management. Haddock may have some sustainability issues and definitely seemed to in the UK, which was impacting fish and chips availability. Summer Flounder is the most sought after commercial and recreational fish, not overfished but experiencing some overfishing and has declined. Being a Citizen Scientist on this project is really giving me a chance to learn about many different fish species known and unknown and their sustainability, which is very important to me."