Seafood and fish have always been of my favorite dishes. I’ve grown up close to the sea and, as a result, my mom did cook it pretty often. It never came to my mind the whole eating fish habit could come to an end. Then widely consumed fishes species started collapsing like Canadian cod back in the 90s.
A very frightening documentary called « Global sushi : demain nos enfants mangeront des méduses » (Global sushi: tomorrow our kids will be eating jellyfishes) was aired the other day on TV here. I can’t stop thinking about it since I saw it. Some scientists were explaining that we now know it’s impossible to reverse the effects of overfishing; fishing prohibition usually comes when a species has reached a very critic level and these fishes populations never get to grow again, even after decades.
Fish farming doesn’t seem to be a solution either given that we still need to feed these fishes with smaller ones. Count something like 10 lbs of small wild fish to get 1 lb of salmon…
It got back to being a hot topic because of the actual concern for tuna, especially bigeye and yellowfin which should be extincted over the next 3 to 5 years if we don’t do anything about it being overfished.
Think about it. We, occidental consumers, have been eating it all our lives. And, let’s face it, we’ve been eating most of the fish predators like swordfish, cod, skate and tuna. Now that huge populations in the world are in the process of accessing the western way of consumption, this will not get any better… Less and less predators in the sea, more and more smaller plankton-feeding fishes. If nothing changes, jellyfishes could replace the ones we eat in our seas during this century, Greenpeace says.
I had already stopped eating tuna sushis but I’m definitely going to cut down my fish consumption and get more information on the one I actually buy. As for scallops, you shouldn’t buy any from New Zealand as they’re endangered in that region. They’re now being farmed in most places and, as they eat plankton, it seems sustainable.
Here is a recipe I adapted from French magazine « Elle à Table » (last December issue). I used fresh scallops already opened and cleaned but if you buy them with shell, click here for explanation on how to clean them.
Preparation time: 5 minutes – Baking time: 8 minutes
Ingredients (for 6 servings)
12 big fresh scallops (18 if they’re small)
4 thin slices of Parma ham
1 garlic clove
3 tablespoons of dried breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons of parsley
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1/ Preheat oven to 410° F (210° C / T 7).
2/ Mix breadcrumbs, Parma ham, garlic, parsley and 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a food processor.
3/ Fold a piece of kitchen paper, pour 1 teaspoon of olive oil on it and use it to grease an oven rack.
4/ Place scallops on the greased rack and top them with Parma ham mix.
5/ Pour a dash of olive oil on top and bake in oven for 8 minutes.
Serve as a starter with a few leaves of lamb’s lettuce or rocket if you like.