Oh the wonders of Mother Nature

Yes! Summer is here!!! I know, I know, I do tend to melt in the the heat, but my tomatoes are just not going to ripen without a good heat wave, so I'll just have to grin and bear it...

Anyhoo, I never cease to be amazed by Nature's abilities for adaptation. Take the mackerel for example:
Aren't they pretty? Look at their aerodynamic bodies. They were just made to zip through waters. You can see the family resemblance with their cousin the tunas. Beautiful creatures, lovely markings, so adapted to their environment. Mackerels do not have a visible layer of fat, like salmon for example, but they are a fatty fish, well suited to cold waters, and therefore high in omega fatty acids.

These babies are scaleless and have few small bones, so they are a no fuss fish. Really easy to prepare and a change from humdrum farmed salmon or endangered bluefin tuna.

Mackerel are low in the food chain, so they have few of the toxins associated with bigger fish. They swim around in big schools, and are pretty abundant. They also tend to be cheap year round, but right now is the time to pick up some fresh -not frozen, Atlantic mackerel. And when I say cheap, I mean CHEAP!!!! Currently, in Montreal, fresh mackerel average at 3$/lb (7$/kg), bluefin tuna, on the other hand, weighs in at 50$/kg, and farmed salmon is 30$/kg. All that without the side order of mercury, and little guilt since mackerel stocks are healthy and the industry is deemed sustainable overall. The beauties you see here cost me 10$, that's 2$ apiece, and they were fresh-caught yesterday. One fish is more than enough for a fish-loving adult, or 2 not too keen on fish... But if you like canned tuna, you really should try mackerel: being a not too distant cousin, it has some similarities in flavour. Some. I will grant you that it will never pass off as tuna, but it is close to canned light tuna. And it's yummy!
Mackerel is lovely on the bbq, generously doused in oil so as to not stick, and some lemon juice once on the plate, but I like it oven-grilled (broiled). Pre-heat your oven to 425'F (190'C)Cut a few slits on one side, sprinkle a good amount of salt... enough so that you can see the grains, but not a thick layer (about ½ a teaspoon). You can stuff the belly with some herbs, and pop the fish in the oven. Let bake about 8 minutes, then turn the broiler on, and leave for 2 minutes more, or until the tail starts charring.

Y.U.M.M.Y. Served with some veggies and bread or rice, and you've got yourself a lovely meal.

Bon app'!


  1. Greetings,

    My name is Barbara O’ Brien and my blogging at The Mahablog, Crooks and Liars, AlterNet, and elsewhere on the progressive environmental blogophere has earned me the notoriety of being a panelist at the Yearly Kos Convention and a featured guest blogger at the Take Back America Conference in Washington, DC.

    I’m contacting you because I found your site in an environmental search and want to tell you about my newest blogging platform —the environmental concern of Asbestos Litigation Blog at www.maacenter.org/blog —where I am looking at critical issues in new light. Our shared concerns include asbestos contamination of the environment, environmentally safe workplaces, green public policies, health, and green building.

    To increase awareness on these important issues, my goal is to get a resource link on your site or even allow me to provide a guest posting. Please contact me back, I hope to hear from you soon. Drop by our site www.maacenter.org in the meantime.


    Barbara O’Brien


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