Primary Seasonal Species
|Nantucket Bay Scallop||Northeast|
|Oysters from most US waters||NW & NE|
|American Red Snapper||Southeast|
|Soft Shell Blue Crab||Northeast|
|Wahoo Ono||South Pacific|
Primary Year-round Species
|Ahi Tuna||South Pacific|
|All Soles & Flounders||All US waters|
|Mahi Mahi||South Pacific|
Dungeness CrabLike all crabs, the Dungeness crab is high in protein and minerals and low in fat. About one quarter of this crab's weight is meat, making it one of the meatiest crabs available.Most of the meat is in the eight legs and two claws, although the body contains plenty as well.
The flesh has what is considered to be a delicate flavor that is slightly sweet.
Nantucket Bay Scallop
Scallops are a popular type of shellfish in both Eastern and Western cooking. They are characterised by having two types of meat in one shell: the adductor muscle, called "scallop" which is white and meaty, and the roe, called "coral", which is red or white and soft.
In Western cuisine, scallops are commonly sautéed in butter, or else breaded and deep fried. Scallops are commonly paired with light semi-dry white wines. In the U.S., when a scallop is prepared, usually only the adductor muscle is used; the other parts of the scallop surrounding the muscle are ordinarily discarded. Sometimes markets sell scallops already prepared in the shell with only the adductor muscle intact. Outside the U.S. the scallop is often sold whole.
Scallops have lent their name to the culinary term scalloped, which originally referred to seafood creamed and served hot in the shell.
Oysters from most US waters
Oysters can be eaten half shelled, raw, smoked, boiled, baked, fried, roasted, stewed, canned, pickled, steamed, broiled (grilled) or used in a variety of drinks. Preparation can be as simple as opening the shell and eating the contents including juice or adding butter and/or salt, or can be very elaborate. They are sometimes served on edible seaweed, such as brown algae. Unlike most shellfish, oysters can have a fairly long shelf-life: up to around two weeks; however, they should be consumed when fresh, as their taste reflects their age.
Raw oysters were once a staple food for the poor in many countries with coastal access such as the United Kingdom and along the East Coast of the US and are thus still easily found in any areas bordering a sea or ocean. Oysters are commonly eaten raw in France in bars and as a 'bar fast food' but the home use tends to be mixed with a large usage in cooking - steamed or in paella or soups.
American Red Snapper
The red snapper, Lutjanus campechanus, is a reef fish found off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of The Americas and the Gulf of Mexico. The red snapper commonly inhabits waters from 30 to 200 ft (10 to 60 m), but can be caught as deep as 300 ft (100 m) or more on occasion. They stay relatively close to the bottom, and inhabit rocky bottom, ledges, ridges, and artificial reefs, including offshore oil rigs and shipwrecks.
Bluefin, which can weigh over 1,000 pounds and while juvenile fish have lighter flesh and are mildly flavored, adulthood bluefin have dark red flesh and a pronounced flavor.
A halibut is a type of flatfish from the family of the right-eye flounders (Pleuronectidae). This name is derived from haly (holy) and butt (flat fish), alleged to be called so from being commonly eaten on holy-days. Halibut live in both the North Pacific and the North Atlantic oceans and are highly regarded food fish.
Halibut are typically broiled, deep fat fried or lightly grilled while fresh. The fillets can also be smoked but this method is more difficult with halibut meat than it is with salmon, due to the ultra-low fat content of halibut. Eaten fresh, the meat has a very clean taste and requires little seasoning. Halibut is also noted for its very dense and firm texture, almost more akin to chicken.
Known as the "king salmon" in Alaska for its large size and flavorful flesh, the Chinook is the state fish. Those from the Copper River in Alaska are particularly known for their color, rich flavor, firm texture, and high Omega-3 oil content.
Chinook salmon range from San Francisco Bay in California to north of the Bering Strait in Alaska, and the arctic waters of Canada and Russia (the Chukchi Sea ), including the entire Pacific coast in between. Populations occur in Asia as far south as the islands of Japan. In Russia, they are found in Kamchatka and the Kuril Islands.
Salmon is the common name for several species of fish of the family Salmonidae. The fish is pink and silver. The salmon has long been at the heart of the culture and livelihood of coastal dwellers. Most peoples of the Northern Pacific shore had a ceremony to honor the first return of the year. For many centuries, people caught salmon as they swam upriver to spawn.
Consuming salmon is considered to be healthy due to the fish's high protein, high Omega-3 fatty acids, and high vitamin D content.
Spot prawns are the largest of the 7 commercial species of shrimp found in North Pacific waters. They range from the waters off Unalaska Island, Alaska, to San Diego.
While prawns can be grilled, baked, sautéed, boiled or steamed, they only require 1 to 2 minutes cooking time and are done when they just turn pink. Overcooking will toughen the prawns.
The blacktip shark, Carcharhinus limbatus, is a large shark, native to the continental and insular shelves of tropical and warm temperate seas around the world. The blacktip is a large fairly stout shark, grey in colour, normally with black-tipped fins. It has a long, narrow, pointed snout, long gill slits, a large first dorsal fin and fairly large second dorsal.
Its flesh is used fresh, dried or salted for consumption, its hide is used for leather and its liver for oil. It is occasionally taken as a game fish and often by shore anglers.
The blue crab (Callinectes sapidus, from the Greek calli="beautiful", nectes="swimmer", and Latin sapidus="savory") is a crustacean found in the waters of the western Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico, which is the Maryland State Crustacean and the subject of an extensive fishery.
Blue crabs are blue because their shell contains a number of pigments, including Alpha-crustacyanin, which interacts with a red pigment, astaxanthin, to form a greenish-blue coloration. When the crab is cooked, the Alpha-crustacyanin breaks down, leaving only the astaxanthin, which turns the crab red-orange.
Soft Shell Blue Crab
A crustacean seafood that can be eaten whole if cooked shortly after molting their hard shell. As crabs grow larger, their shells cannot expand, so they molt the exteriors and have a soft covering for a matter of days when they are vulnerable and considered usable. Fishermen often put crabs beginning to molt aside, until the molting process is complete in order to send them to market as soft-shells. Crabs should be kept alive until immediately before cooking so they are fresh. Usually crabs must be eaten within four days of molting to be useful as soft-shell crabs.
In Hawaii, the fish is known as ono. Hispanic areas of the Caribbean and Central America call it Peto. Its speed and high-quality flesh make it a prize game fish. Wahoo tend to be solitary or occur in loose-knit groups of two or three fish, rather than in schools. Their diet consists essentially of other fish and squid.
The flesh of the wahoo is delicate and white and regarded as very good in quality. This has created some demand for the wahoo as a premium priced commercial food fish.
This species has an elongated oblong narrow shell, which ranges from 3 to 6¼ inches in length. It can be found along the Pacific West Coast from the eastern Aleutian Islands, Alaska, to Pismo Beach, California. It is similar to the smaller Atlantic razor clam, Siliqua costata, which is found on the American East Coast. (Another eastern species in the same family is sometimes also called a razor clam: Ensis directus, but this is in a different genus, is not very similar, and can also be known as the Atlantic jackknife clam.)
This species is a game fish and provides fine sport in fresh and salt water from July to December, especially with light fishing tackle. It is one of the most popular sport fish in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. Its popularity is due in part to the reckless abandon which it frequently displays chasing bait and lure while in salt water, and the large number of coastal streams it ascends during its spawning runs. Its habit of schooling in relatively shallow water, and often near beaches, makes it accessible to anglers on the banks as well as in boats.
Ocean caught coho is regarded as excellent table fare. It has a moderate to high amount of fat, which is considered essential when judging taste. Only Spring Chinook and Sockeye salmon have higher levels of fats in their meat.
Historically, the coho, along with other species, has been a staple in the diet of several Indigenous Peoples, who would also use it to trade with other tribes farther inland. The coho salmon is also a symbol of several tribes, representing life and sustenance.
It is a Pacific salmon, may also be known as dog salmon or chum salmon, and is often marketed under the name Silverbrite salmon. The name Chum Salmon comes from the Chinook Jargon term tzum, meaning "spotted" or "marked".
King crabs, also called stone crabs, are a family of crab-like decapod crustaceans chiefly found in cold seas. Because of their large size and the taste of their flesh, many species are widely caught and sold. The most popular crab-fishing months occur between October and January.
Also known as yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares), Ahi is a type of tuna found in open waters of tropical and subtropical seas worldwide. Ahi is becoming a popular replacement for the severely depleted supplies of bluefin tuna.
According to the Hawaii Seafood Buyers Guide, Yellowfin tuna is widely used as raw fish dishes, especially sashimi. This fish is also excellent for grilling. Yellowfin is often served seared or rare.
In the western Atlantic Ocean, cod has a distribution north of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, and round both coasts of Greenland; in the eastern Atlantic it is found from the Bay of Biscay north to the Arctic Ocean, including the North Sea, areas around Iceland and the Barents Sea.
Cod is a popular food fish with a mild flavor, low fat content and a dense white flesh that flakes easily.
Cod is moist and flaky when cooked and is white in color. In the United Kingdom, Atlantic cod is one of the most common kinds of fish to be found in fish and chips, along with haddock and plaice. It is also well known for being largely consumed in Portugal and the Basque Country, where it is considered a treasure of the nation's cuisine.
It is native to the North American west coast from Shumagin Islands in the Gulf of Alaska to Baja California. The lingcod is a popular eating fish, and is thus prized by anglers.
Though not closely related to either ling or cod, the name lingcod originated because it somewhat resembles those fish.
Catfish have been widely caught and farmed for food for hundreds of years in Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America. Judgments as to the quality and flavor vary, with some food critics considering catfish as being excellent food, others dismiss them as watery and lacking in flavour In Central Europe, catfish were often viewed as a delicacy to be enjoyed on feast days and holidays. Migrants from Europe and Africa to the United States brought along this tradition, and in the southern United States catfish is an extremely popular food.
All Soles & Flounders
The soles are flatfishes of various families. Generally speaking, they are the members of the family Soleidae, but, outside Europe, the name 'sole' is also applied to various other similar flatfish, especially other members of the sole suborder Soleoidei as well as members of the flounder family.
While flounders have both eyes situated on one side of the head, they are not born this way. Their life involves metamorphosis. During metamorphosis, one eye migrates to the other side of the body so that both eyes are situated on the upward-facing side of its body. After metamorphosis, flounder lie on one side on the ocean floor; either the left or right side might face upward depending on the species.
Rainbow trout is popular in Western cuisine and is caught wild and farmed for food. It has tender flesh and a mild, somewhat nutty flavor. Rainbow trout are raised in many countries throughout the world.
They are near the top of the food chain in most freshwater environments. However, they are lower on the rung of other freshwater predators such as pike, muskie, lake trout, and chinook salmon.
The word "grouper" comes from the word for the fish, most widely believed to be from the Portuguese name, garoupa. The origin of this name in Portuguese is believed to be from an indigenous South American language.
Many groupers are important food fish, and some of them are now farmed. Unlike most other fish species which are chilled or frozen, groupers are generally sold alive in markets. Any species are popular fish for sea-angling. Some species are small enough to be kept in aquaria, though even the small species are inclined to grow rapidly.
As food, mahi-mahi have a chicken-like taste and texture. When they are removed from the water, the fish often change color among several hues (this being the reason for their Spanish name, Dorado Maverikos), finally fading to a muted yellow-grey upon death. Mahi-mahi are among the fastest-growing fish. They are fast swimmers as well, with a top swimming speed of 50 knots. Mahi-mahi spawn in warm ocean currents throughout much of the year, and its young are commonly found in seaweed.
In its natal streams, Atlantic salmon are considered a prized recreational fish, pursued by avid fly anglers during its annual runs.
Swordfish (Xiphias gladius), also known as Broadbill in some countries, are large, highly migratory, predatory fish characterized by a long, flat bill. They are a popular sport fish, though elusive. Swordfish are elongated, round-bodied, and lose all teeth and scales by adulthood.
Swordfish is a particularly popular fish for cooking. Since swordfish are large animals, meat is usually sold as steaks, which are often grilled. The color of the flesh varies by diet, with fish caught on the east coast of North America often being rosier.