Saturday, February 13, 2010

A Simple Guide for Enjoying Fresh Sea Food

Most shoppers are aware that there are seasons for various fruits and vegetables, meaning particular times of the year certain food items aren't just more affordable, they are tastier. While international shipping of produce means that just about any month you can find everything from strawberries to avocados, that doesn't mean that it's a good idea to shop regardless of the season.

Local food movements and more environmentally-conscious shopping attempts have led to a renewed interest in shopping for food within the right seasons only. And it is certainly easy enough for anyone to learn what fruits and vegetables should be available in a particular month, with numerous resources, as well as the option to go with a local CSA or farm share, which promises a crate of fresh produce for every month of the year.

Outside of the world of fruits and vegetables, though, things can get a little more complicated. After all, seafood--those fruits of the sea, as the French say--have seasons, too, unlike land animals like beef or chickens. But there's already enough trouble in making sure to choose something that's not on the overfished list, so what can help with picking and choosing fish carefully? The Alaska Harvesting Seasons Chart, of course.

With Alaska Harvesting Seasons Chart, shoppers can understand not just when to expect certain types of seafood, but also can learn the best way of shopping for the freshest fish and crabs possible. A simple way of figuring out when commercial fleets fish for particular seafood items, a regular consumer can use the chart to determine whether or not fish in a local store is actually fresh, as well as plan menus in advance. A number of professional chefs have also embraced the Alaska Harvesting Seasons Chart, planning their restaurant menus around what is practically the gold standard in knowing when something like king crab should be plentiful.

Upon examining the Alaska Harvesting Seasons Chart, shoppers will be surprised to find out which fish are highly sustainable and available year-round. King Salmon, for example, are harvested every single month of the year, wit Coho, Keta, Pink, and Sockeye salmon seasons each running a respectable five months' each, with most of those months during the summer season. By contrast, snow crab and king crab season falls during winter, as does harvest time for Weathervane Scallops.

What this actually means is that year-round, consumers can rest assured that something is in season, as far as the ocean goes, from the waters of Alaska. Whether it's the surprise that comes with learning that King Salmon and Alaskan Oysters are year-round sustainable products to purchase, or delighting in knowing that while certain seasons might run heavier towards the fall or winter, there are just as many options that are being harvested in the summer and spring months.

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