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Sep 27, 2008 06:35 AM

fishy fish

I've yet to meet a sea creature I actively dislike (the only exception being raw clams, & I'm not sure why, as I love them cooked—thoughts?), but I've especially got a soft spot for those with the stronger flavor profiles, be they raw, smoked, pickled, etc.: mackerel, bluefish, anchovies, herring, trout, swordfish, shark...

I'd like to lose those ellipses: what am I forgetting or missing that I could easily get in the states (or, more specifically, that could at least be shipped to the landlocked state I'm in)?


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  1. Smoked mussels and scallops? Salt herring; very cheap here. Caviars.

    7 Replies
    1. re: Passadumkeg

      I've never smoked scallops before. How does one do that?

      Sure caviar. Wish I could afford it ever.

      You just reminded me that bacalao belongs on the list, though that's a function of the salt rather than the flesh.

      1. re: tatamagouche

        I like dried seafood as a snack. Baby scallops and spicy squid are a couple of my favorites. You can find 'em at most Chinese markets and anyplace that sells Hawai'ian crack seed.

        As far as fish eggs go, the hideously expensive stuff from sturgeons is the exception. Whitefish, pike, salmon, and many other types of roe are commonly available for prices in the "affordable luxury" range ($5-10 for a two-ounce jar). Many Russian markets will have a good selection. Look for икра - transliterated ikra, pronounced ee-krah.

        1. re: alanbarnes

          Yes, I assumed by "caviar" Passadumkeg meant Beluga and such. I do love roe and that goes on the list too!

          1. re: tatamagouche

            Beluga! I haven't had that since 69-70 in the good ol' days of the Soviet Union. No, I used plural, "caviars" on purpose. There are many different kinds.
            Check it out. Smelt are listed down below. When they are running, my wife and I net a gallon each per day, free. Not a strong fishy flavor though. Again try to find salt herring or Finhaddie. Real pucker power.
            Go eat some green chile for me will ya. I can't get that here.

            1. re: Passadumkeg

              True, the green chile rocks around here. But every time you post you're talking about these things just beyond your doorway that make me so jealous...

              Well, I must admit I've only ever had salmon and flying fish roe, and gray mullet roe in the form of bottarga, all of which, again, I love, but what other eggs are eaten? (Now that we're all ruling out for economic reasons the Russian/Iranian/what have you sturgeon.)

              Does anyone know if sea slugs are edible? Just curious.

              1. re: tatamagouche

                Cod and burbot. (Don't forget Rocky Mountain Oysters for good strong flavor.)

                1. re: Passadumkeg

                  Ha, yes, and I've had them. Whole different animal, of course, literally.

    2. I'm not really a fan of salmon or white fleshed fish, but I'll still eat them.

      I too much prefer a salt grilled mackerel or saury because they have more flavor to them.

      1. I agree with what I had thought you were saying, the fish mentioned generally are "fattier," such as mackerel. I would add salmon and sardines to the list. But, I tend to think of swordfish and trout as being on the milder side. Perhaps I am misunderstanding your question.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Sinicle

          I agree, they're lower on the spectrum of pungency, but they're not like (nonsalt) cod or halibut. But yes, sardines and a good piece of salmon (seems like inferior pieces can have no flavor at all).

          Sea urchin belongs on the list. I used to hate it but I just recently came around.

        2. You should try bottarga, a brick of salted fish roe that is usually shaved or grated over pasta, and also squid ink.

          1 Reply
          1. re: babette feasts

            Oh, I have, and I love both!! Good calls; they're on the list.

            There's a place in Boston called Taranta that used to serve spaghetti with sea urchin (which, oddly, I've always liked in things, just not as sushi until recently) and bottarga (gray mullet, I believe). It wasn't very popular, I guess, sadly, so is long gone. I adored it.

          2. Clams need to be fresh, if they need shipping a long dist. I'd pass. If you never tried 'white anchovies' you should, very mild and great on salads. Also, grilled fresh bluefish is also excellent.

            2 Replies
            1. re: cstr

              Yes, both anchovies and bluefish are in my OP.

              And I used to live in Boston...still didn't like raw clams. I'll keep trying though!

              1. re: cstr

                I heartedly agree with you cstr. I miss the deep fried anchovies in Spain...