It's holiday time! What better treat than delicious sustainable seafood appetizers and meals you can also feel good about serving?
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This month's focus is on spot prawns, Dungeness crab and oysters.
Spot prawns (sushi name: amaebi) are the largest shrimp species found in Canada's West Coast waters. They have a reddish brown shell and distinctive white spots on their abdominal segments. Caught wild or by trap off B.C.'s coast, they're a SeaChoice "best choice".
Prawns are known for their sweet, succulent flavor and firm texture. They cook in just a couple of minutes and give amazing results with little effort. Spot prawns are available frozen year-round. Avoid buying prawns or shrimp that are not SeaChoice "green" or "yellow" options. Farmed shrimp from the tropics are associated with severe habitat destruction.
SeaChoice lists Dungeness crabs as "yellow", or "some concerns". While their population is generally stable, concerns remain about high levels of fishing, though good fisheries management in B.C., Washington and California has led to stable catches over several decades. The crabs are wild-, pot- or trap-caught and don't involve a lot of bycatch. There is some concern over fisheries' interactions with endangered whale populations.
Savour delicious Dungeness crab cakes by Angela Tunner.
Farmed oysters, found throughout the world's oceans, are an excellent SeaChoice "best choice" option. Oysters are farmed in natural intertidal or sub-tidal waters in rafts or floats, or fixed to the seabed. Farming oysters improves coastal conditions by converting nutrients and organic matter to biomass.
Yumm. Smoked (canned) oyster and bacon stuffing. Serve stuffing in mini bowls or cupcake foil for appetizers.
All the best for your holidays!</p
The David Suzuki Foundation sustainable seafood team