My fishmonger

My hometown fishmonger goes out every night to lay out fish traps where the Long Son river meets the ocean, and collect them by 11 am in the am.


I like the fact that the fish are all alive when caught by this method…at least before they got iced up for the market.


20151129_132434Cá sủ mỹ và cá dìa20151212_101912On weekends I often try to catch him just as he got off the boat…or on the way to the market. See what he caught for the day…and stock up.20151212_101747Black drum, mullets, and some smaller whitefish…some “brown fish” (cá nâu)…but they are a bit too small today




Problem with speared fish

My fishmonger from Phan Thiet sold me a parrot fish and a red snapper (tai) which had been speared. Problem with speared fish is that you can’t eat the speared part – so in this case, half a fillet is gone.  On the plus side, the blood had been drained at sea, so the remaining flesh is translucent and sashimi quality. I like my “tai” fish skin on.   

I learned from a sushi chef in Los Angeles – his name was Shige – that if you pour hot water on a cold piece of snapper’s skin for a few seconds, then dunk the fish in iced water to stop the cooking, you can have red snapper sashimi with skin on. It has a fatty and crunchy texture compared to the soft flesh. Try it sometimes.


In any case, don’t buy speared fish if you have another choices. I hate wasting good fish.