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Okay, tilapia's off the menu...any recommendable substitutes?

annagranfors Jun 8, 2014 11:38 PM

I had my suspicions about it from the outset, but the thread downstream seems to confirm them, with some commenters in disagreement. I never bought it, but my 80 year old (limited budget) mom was a big fan...until I spoke with her tonight and mentioned some of the downsides listed in the aforementioned thread.

But she *loves* fish...the problem is, she lives in Florida, and years after Deepwater Horizon, I still don't think it's a good idea for her to be eating locally-sourced fish.

Anyone know of a reasonably (if not comparably) priced alternative for her? I basically just eat overpriced (but safe...I think) sushi at the better Los Angeles sushi restaurants where the chefs are extremely picky about the fish they serve, so I don't know what's on offer at the grocery stores.

She'd (and I'd) love any good suggestions! :)

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  1. t
    treb RE: annagranfors Jun 9, 2014 03:02 AM

    I think tilapia is tastless, I'd opt for some type of white fish such as sole, cod, haddock or grouper.

    3 Replies
    1. re: treb
      coll RE: treb Jun 9, 2014 03:12 AM

      Do they have flounder down there? That's my default fish.

      If she's buying frozen, just look for "wild caught" on the label.

      1. re: coll
        t
        treb RE: coll Jun 9, 2014 03:15 AM

        Kind of why I suggested sole, flounder may be a northeast term.

        1. re: treb
          coll RE: treb Jun 9, 2014 03:20 AM

          They are very similar. She could keep her eye out for both, especially if we're talking frozen. That;s assuming she's getting the tilapia frozen (or thawed?) I see a lot more frozen flounder than frozen sole, but maybe that's just where I am.

    2. carolinadawg RE: annagranfors Jun 9, 2014 03:16 AM

      I'd eat any local fish versus any imported from Asia, Deepwater Horizon or not. Grouper, Cobia, Wahoo, Mahi Mahi.

      1. JTPhilly RE: annagranfors Jun 9, 2014 07:29 AM

        Cod or Haddock are available wild caught fairly inexpensively and even American farmed Catfish are safer and better tasting than Swai or Tilapia

        1. Ttrockwood RE: annagranfors Jun 9, 2014 02:19 PM

          Seafood watch is the best reference, and their site has suggestions per region of the country as well
          http://mobile.seafoodwatch.org

          There are many options of tinned sustainable fish as well like salmon, sardines, smoked trout, and mackerel that are not only cheap but also have high quantities of omega fatty acids.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Ttrockwood
            k
            knucklesandwich RE: Ttrockwood Jun 10, 2014 04:21 AM

            Seafood Watch is not a reliable source. Almost all of their "Good Alternative" suggestions belong in the "Avoid" column.

            Relying on the MBA for seafood advice is like asking Sea World how to protect Orcas.

          2. scubadoo97 RE: annagranfors Jun 10, 2014 04:38 AM

            What part of Florida does she live?

            3 Replies
            1. re: scubadoo97
              annagranfors RE: scubadoo97 Jun 10, 2014 08:07 AM

              Almost the exact center of the state, south of Orlando. And I've sent her links for both this and the last tilapia thread, and she thanks you for all your suggestions, as do I.

              1. re: annagranfors
                scubadoo97 RE: annagranfors Jun 10, 2014 09:48 AM

                I personally would eat fish from our local waters before eating farmed fish. And I do eat a lot of local seafood. Is your mother immune compromised in any way? At 80 yrs old she has little to worry about local fish causing any illness

                1. re: scubadoo97
                  annagranfors RE: scubadoo97 Jun 10, 2014 07:24 PM

                  scubadoo97–if it was fish caught off the Atlantic side of the state, I'd agree completely, but I'm not so sure about Gulf-caught fish. And even the oil wouldn't bother me so much as the Corexit that BP poured on the oil spill. Wikipedia has a lot of not-so-nice info about what that stuff did to the Gulf marine environment. (And yes, I know Wikipedia can be edited by anyone, but I've seen/heard reports from Gulf fishermen who were in agreement.)

                  No, Mom's not immune compromised, but I just worry about, well, a LOT of fish these days. Here on the west coast, we've had reports about some of the fish having borne the results of the Fukushima nuclear spill.

                  I realize that I sounded kinda bourgeois in my original post when I mentioned eating sushi at upscale sushi places to (I'm hopeful) ensure that the fish I'm eating is safe. But where I used to eat sushi at medium-to-high priced places at least a few times a month, I've only gone a few times this year to the overpriced places–but their chefs take great care in using only the best fish. I'd just like my mom to have the same alternative, at a price she can afford.

                  And once again, thanks all for your advice! :)

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