Papaya Magazine

12.12.14 / Red Gurnard

On my way home from Christmas shopping I popped into the Grainger Market to peruse the fish stalls. Some lovely red Gurnard took my fancy and I had to buy some.
Gurnard is a delicious fish with clean white flesh and a mild taste. It is very versatile. It bakes, fries and poaches well. It also makes a lovely stock or soup.
I filleted my gurnard and fried the fillets. This left me with lots of bones and heads to make a stock for the sauce.
Red gurnard has been recommended as a sustainable fish by people such as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. It seems that red gurnard are often taken as a by-catch from trawls seeking other fish. For that reason there appears to be little reliable data on their sustainability. I guess that eating the by-catch is better than throwing it back when it is dead but, as with any fish, I always have a nagging doubt in the back of my mind.
I’ll leave it to you to decide your position but as when buying any fish do give it some serious thought and ask your fishmonger about the sustainability of what you are about to buy.
The Marine Stewardship Council is a good source of info on which fish to buy and what to look out for.
 

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