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Red bass - ah yes, that takes me back to my first trip to Oz in 1988

 

This first trip to Australia was to meet Norma’s family, who lived in Queensland at the time. A grand family gathering was organised, including a Great Feast – a rite of passage into the clan for me.

 

Norma’s sister-in-law was a cardiac nurse. When the end result of a high cholesterol, high alcohol, heavy smoking, high stress, typically Australian life-style was brought in to her hospital, either the patient snuffed it, or recovered to find a nice young lady (aforesaid sister-in-law) holding his hand and telling him that he was still alive. Naturally such patients were usually extremely grateful, and nursie often got showered with presents. One of these presents was a large red fish caught by one of the patients during his convalescence. It was called a "Red Snapper" and kept in the freezer until we arrived to attend the family gathering with its customary Great Feast.

 

It so happened that I had done some extensive homework on Queensland fish, and was pretty confident I could recognise quite a few of them. When the fish was defrosted I examined it. It was not a Red Snapper, but a Red Bass, Lutjanus bohar , well known as potentially ciguatoxic. I said so. It was not a wise move.

 

Norma believed me, but of course the rest of the family didn't know the depth of my interest in fish. "What does this Pommie know about a fish that has been identified as a Red Snapper by an experienced Aussie angler?" was obviously what they were all thinking but too polite to say.

 

I did not insist too vigorously, and the fish was cooked. I thought, "If I don't partake of this meal and the rest of them survive, I'll never, ever, be able to hold up my head in this family. The choice is clear – lose status or risk poisoning." I had read about the survival prospects of ciguatura victims. They were not good. I considered the probability of this particular fish being toxic. My information suggested about one chance in five. Those were odds not a lot worse than getting shot at Russian Roulette.

 

So, fatalistically, I ate one portion, but felt I could decline a second helping without losing face. We all survived.

 

After the meal, I persuaded Norma’s brother Jim to have a look at a couple of books on fish identification. Having done so, he decided, belatedly, that I had been right.

 

Jim proposed we should have a family T-shirt printed, emblazoned "We've Eaten Red Bass" and I was then formally accepted into the family as knowing a bit about fish identification!

 

Could tell y'all a story about eating puffer fish too.

:clap2: Barracuda carry this because they eat reef eating fish such as parrotfish. The poison doesn't kill them but builds up in their flesh. A trick the locals use is to feed the liver of the fish to the village dog, if it's sick or dies they don't eat the fish, if it's ok they eat it. Bit harsh on the dog but, so what. It's a dogs life. :clap2:

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QUOTE(Norm B @ Jan 6 2007, 12:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
:clap2: Barracuda carry this because they eat reef eating fish such as parrotfish. The poison doesn't kill them but builds up in their flesh. A trick the locals use is to feed the liver of the fish to the village dog, if it's sick or dies they don't eat the fish, if it's ok they eat it. Bit harsh on the dog but, so what. It's a dogs life. :clap2:

good old folk law ,,,they new it all 1000 years ago ,whats happened to us ,,& now what have we got ....health & safety ,, & loads of dogs that have survived,,,,,,,,,,,

Ime off to yak skoool,,,,,,no more overruns to get out there,,,,

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  • 3 weeks later...

Was stationed in Split (croatia) for a few months, hundreds of good sized mullet were swimming round the RFA Fort Grange tied up on the quay, they were feeding from the raw sewage from the ship :yucky: the food on board was bad enough!

Needless to say we mostly left em to it, but the ghurkas thought they were great eating!

Having been warned about the contamination risks they had some on a BBQ :wallbash:

If I ever get the hang of it they'll bloody well ban it!

 

 

By the way anyone fancy sponsoring me in the WSOP?

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I'd recommend avoiding shellfish such as oysters, scallops and mussels in summer (ie. when there's NOT an R in the month). The actual flesh is fine, however there's often a lot of roe in them, and the real problem is massively increased levels of nasty bacteria which which give you very bad stomach problems if not cooked properly. Some people are also allergic to them, a colleague of mine is allergic to scallops.

Scallops with a big chunk of roe in them are THE BEST. In French it is called le coral, delicious.

The problem isn't what people don't know, it's what they know that just ain't so.
Vaut mieux ne rien dire et passer pour un con que de parler et prouver que t'en est un!
Mi, ch’fais toudis à m’mote

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Pollack are most certainly not boring to eat!

'oribble things with 'orrible grey flesh! Best given to the dog. I won't eat cod either, they can be full of worms and a potential health risk (Anisakiasis)

PS don't click on the link if you like sushi.

Edited by corydoras

The problem isn't what people don't know, it's what they know that just ain't so.
Vaut mieux ne rien dire et passer pour un con que de parler et prouver que t'en est un!
Mi, ch’fais toudis à m’mote

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"normally asymptomatic" means most people won't even know they ever had them. I've seen those things in loads of cod's guts. I've never found one in the meat but I know other people have done. I've never fancied eating "raw" fish the way the Japanese do. Soused or smoked, yes, but not raw and fresh!

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"normally asymptomatic" means most people won't even know they ever had them. I've seen those things in loads of cod's guts. I've never found one in the meat but I know other people have done. I've never fancied eating "raw" fish the way the Japanese do. Soused or smoked, yes, but not raw and fresh!

I have had them in the middle of my fish and chips and it put me off for life. When I was in the MN I sailed with a lot of ex fishermen from Peterhead and the Broch who would not put 'wormy cod' (their words) in their mouths, and anyway haddock is much nicer and only cost a wee bit more than cod.

The problem isn't what people don't know, it's what they know that just ain't so.
Vaut mieux ne rien dire et passer pour un con que de parler et prouver que t'en est un!
Mi, ch’fais toudis à m’mote

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I have had them in the middle of my fish and chips and it put me off for life. When I was in the MN I sailed with a lot of ex fishermen from Peterhead and the Broch who would not put 'wormy cod' (their words) in their mouths, and anyway haddock is much nicer and only cost a wee bit more than cod.

 

 

Apparently these things move into the muscle tissue post mortem so any cod full of worm from the chippy cant be fresh enough or have been cleaned quickly enough. :yucky:

If I ever get the hang of it they'll bloody well ban it!

 

 

By the way anyone fancy sponsoring me in the WSOP?

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Apparently these things move into the muscle tissue post mortem so any cod full of worm from the chippy cant be fresh enough or have been cleaned quickly enough. :yucky:

I've even seen the little bugg3rs crawling about on cod fillets in fishmongers window displays. Cod is not for me, all cod lovvers are welcome to my share :)

The problem isn't what people don't know, it's what they know that just ain't so.
Vaut mieux ne rien dire et passer pour un con que de parler et prouver que t'en est un!
Mi, ch’fais toudis à m’mote

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I've even seen the little bugg3rs crawling about on cod fillets in fishmongers window displays. Cod is not for me, all cod lovvers are welcome to my share :)

glad i keep failing to catch em then :yucky: still think quicker cleaning might work tho (hopes as cod's nice)

If I ever get the hang of it they'll bloody well ban it!

 

 

By the way anyone fancy sponsoring me in the WSOP?

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