There’s an old fisherman’s myth that claims carp are inedible, but Landers says this simply is not true. Silver carp, native to Asia, are overtaking the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers and their tributaries. In Spring 2012, Congress introduced bills that would help block the Asian carp from infiltrating the Great Lakes, an invasion that scientists say would devastate the region’s $7 billion sport and commercial fishery.
Silver carp are delicious if you use Landers’ secrets to cooking them. First, butcher them right away and refrigerate the meat ASAP. “You can’t let them sit on the bottom of the boat all afternoon like a catfish or bass,” he says. Second, the bone structure is different from most other fish. Cut vertical chunks of meat from the filets and use the protruding bones like kebab skewers. “That way, you're using the awkward bones rather than fighting them.”
Supermarket Fix: While silver carp are not readily available to buy, Landers hopes that the launch of his book will make invasive species like them more commercially available. In the meantime, avoid threatened fish and seafood selections and instead look for things like farmed oysters, wild-caught Pacific sardines, and farmed rainbow trout.
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