Notes from the Island Fishmonger

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Salmon, as we all know, is not a local fish. That brings up the first question of why are we reading about salmon? The answer is because salmon, no matter if you live – Alaska, Florida, or anywhere in the world, is a fish that should be a consistent part of everyone’s weekly diet. For this reason, salmon is a staple in every fish market around the world including Big Water Fish Market on Siesta Key who specializes in local, wild caught, sustainable seafood. Even though that concept stands true as our business model, a fish market is not a true fish market without fish standouts such as imported salmon and cod.

Salmon has a distinct flavor and texture comparable to no other. This inexpensive fish has an orange colored flesh which is meaty, moist, and flakey and is absolutely delicious. It is definitely one of the healthiest foods in the world that our bodies can ingest. It is full of omega-3 fatty acids that not only is heart healthy but may prevent cancer and lower blood pressure and stress according to the “experts.”

I know for a lot of you farm-raised is inhumane, as the fish are grown in small tanks with hundreds of fish. Chilean grown salmon, like the salmon sold in major grocery chains, is very inexpensive and surprisingly still very healthy because of its high fat content but frowned on by the seafood industry because of the farming process and chemicals used to grow this fish.

There is an alternative to this process though and it is called organic ocean farming. This process still has a ton of environmental benefits to it and surprisingly organic ocean farm raised salmon have more of the fatty acid of omega-3 than wild salmon does. Second in omega -3 is wild Alaskan King Salmon followed by Coho Salmon and then Sockeye.

Big Water Fish Market has carried and experimented with them all and after several seafood shows and a few years of research, we decided years ago that the product carried on a consistent basis is the organic ocean farmed Salmon from Ireland or Scotland. We have two suppliers that import and deliver the fish to the back door 3 to 4 times a week. Despite the fact that the fish is actually caught on either Ireland’s Atlantic West Coast or the North Atlantic, it is delivered fresh out of the water on daily flights to North America within 24 hours of being out of the sea. Big Water Fish Market manager, Sebastian Marin says “We will put our organic Irish salmon up against any wild salmon in a taste test…any day. The organic salmon is simply better for you and it definitely tastes better.”

Organic ocean farmed salmon have unique conditions:  They are isolated from pollution outbreaks, enjoy a stable 39 to 50 degree water year-round and the fish are grown in exposed marine sites off the coasts of Ireland or Scotland with strong currents which leads to firm fleshed salmon with low fat content. On average, the organic ocean farmed salmon has more than 10,000 cubic meters of water to swim around in. Each body of water has 1% fish to 99% seawater. This fact along with strong marine currents contribute to a very high-quality product with no color enhancement, no antibiotics and they feed from the wild.

This organic ocean farmed salmon is served daily at Big Water Fish Market on one of the healthiest plates in the world. Grilled Irish Salmon loaded with omega-3, served with fresh seasonal veggies such a broccoli, brussel sprouts, carrots and cauliflower which are all loaded with vitamins and nutrients. This superfood plate is even now served with a fish oil pill. No nap needed after this lunch/dinner as you will be supercharged for the rest of the day.

We also use this sushi grade organic salmon to make our house made specialties such as honey hot smoked salmon, Lox, Salmon Poke and we include chunks of fresh salmon in our fish stew.

Here’s my simple “Citrus, Salt and Herb” Salmon sauce recipe:

½ cup plain reduced fat yogurt

1 tsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice

1 ½ tbsp. of chopped fresh dill

1 tbsp. capers

Deli Dust to taste (only available at Big Water Fish Market)

Simply mix all ingredients in a bowl and chill. Cook your salmon baked or stovetop for approximately 10 minutes (or less if you like it pink inside). Serve your salmon with the above mentioned sauce on top along with a side dish & enjoy!

Live well….eat fish!

Scott Dolan
Big Water Fish Market
6641 Midnight Pass Rd.
Siesta Key – 941-554-8101

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