Our deep, dark oceans contain so many mysterious creatures. Scientists today are still discovering new frightening fish! But, while some curious creatures may chill your bones, the taste will surely make your mouth water. Now is a great time to talk about some of our favorites! In celebration of National Seafood Month and Halloween, let’s take a look at the most delicious creepy crawlies and ooggly booglies in the sea.
The Lionfish is an invasive species on the East Coast. This bad boy is a fast-grower, insatiable eater, and year-round reproducer with poisonous spikes and no known predators. This scary fish is quickly becoming a threat to our ecosystem. In its native areas, like Greece and the Pacific Islands, the fish is regularly consumed. The Lionfish flavor is similar to Snapper and Grouper but with a firmer flaky texture and succulent, buttery flavor, like Mahi-Mahi.
Uni is a delicacy in Japan, often served as sashimi or sushi. Also enjoyed in the United States, many diners delight in the unique creamy texture and surprising flavor mix of sweetness and ocean brine. But have you seen the ghoulish Sea Urchin whole? They have globe shaped bodies covered with many long spines for protection. The scariest part is the “Mouth” hole on its bottom with five sharp teeth that are able to drill a hole in the rock!
Mantis Shrimp, named after their resemblance to the praying mantis, are typically served as sashimi, boiled whole, or just eaten out of the shell. The meat is tender, sweet, and buttery like Lobster. But the taste isn’t the only thing that packs a punch. Mantis Shrimp actually punch their prey at the speed of a .22 caliber bullet. This nightmarish shrimp has been known to break their way through glass!
John Dory is very popular in the U.K and Australia, but it seems uninviting due to it gaping mouth and lethal spikes. It even scares his prey with the “evil eye” on its side. It is said that it was imprinted by “the gatekeeper’s thumb”. But don’t be fooled! John Dory is an amazing fish with dense white meat and firm, flaky texture. It’s delicate sweet flavor is compared to Turbot or Sole.
Monkfish are among the ugliest, scariest looking fish out there! It’s a scale-less, soft-bodied flat fish with long, sharp claw-like teeth and an oversized mouth. This fish uses its pectoral fins to creep along the ocean floor and ambush and swallow prey whole! But Monkfish is scary good and prized for its mild lobster-like taste. The texture is firm and dense like Scallops. This fish is very versatile, but braising and roasting really bring out it’s richness.
Lastly, the Nordic Wolffish has an eel-like body and a giant head. The Wolffish’s most distinguishing feature is its teeth – both jaws have about six “fangs” and behind those are three rows of teeth that crush shellfish whole! They’re also known by the natural antifreeze they produce to keep their blood moving in the cold. But this cold-as-ice fish really heats up a kitchen. Wolffish have a mild, delicious sweet flavor reminiscent of Crab. The firm texture holds up really well in a fish stew, and it’s especially great when fried.
Wolfish is on sale all Month. Talk to your Samuels Agent about adding Wolffish and other creepy treats to your menu. Happy Halloween!