Skip to comments.Illinois DNR hires chef to show how tasty Asian carp can be
Posted on 09/22/2011 12:54:09 PM PDT by Red Badger
It is a stark reminder that the Asian carp infestation that has overwhelmed stretches of river in the Mississippi River basin and is now threatening the waters of the Great Lakes isn't going to go away anytime soon: The Illinois Department of Natural Resources has hired a Louisiana chef for a made-for-media event this week to demonstrate just how good these fish can be to eat.
It's part of the Target Hunger Now campaign, a state-sponsored humanitarian effort to turn the jumbo jumping carp into "healthy, ready-to-serve meals" for the needy. The program also provides venison to the poor.
It already has provided thousands of meals to needy children and families, but this is about more than feeding the poor.
Illinois is in a protracted battle with its neighboring Great Lakes states over how to beat back the carp migrating up the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, a man-made link between the carp-infested Mississippi basin and Lake Michigan.
Neighboring states want Illinois to slam shut two navigation locks as a makeshift barrier to block the advance of the fish; Illinois contends that such a closure would do great harm to the barge industry that relies on a free-flowing canal, and that it is unnecessary because an electric barrier on the canal is keeping the carp at bay.
Not everyone is so convinced the barrier is working as advertised. Water samples taken from the 70-plus miles of canals above the barrier repeatedly have tested positive for Asian carp DNA, and in the summer of 2010, a 20-pound Asian carp was pulled from a fisherman's net about seven miles south of Lake Michigan.
Illinois officials see its eat-the-carp program as another tool to keep the fish out of Lake Michigan.
According to the Illinois DNR:
"Illinois' $15 billion-dollar shipping industry has been threatened through ongoing legal actions by neighboring Great Lakes states in an attempt to close Chicago's navigation locks. Using Asian carp as a healthy food source for food banks is a major step towards eradication of the fish in Illinois waters and protects the waterway shipping industry from forced closures of our locks and dam systems."
The Illinois DNR also hopes the program will do some good for Illinois rivers.
"The Asian carp threat also continues to have a negative impact on Illinois' commercial and sport fishing industries and tourism and leads to revenue and job loss. Asian carp are voracious eaters consuming more than 40 percent of their body weight per day in plankton," states the Illinois DNR's official description of the program.
"They compete with our native fish species for food and can quickly overtake native populations of fish in our rivers, lakes and streams. The planned overfishing program of Asian carp will help protect these multibillion dollar industries in Illinois and the Great Lakes while protecting revenues and ensuring jobs. The overfishing program for Asian carp will also provide an abundance of fish available to feed our fellow Illinoisans."
The Illinois DNR will demonstrate recipes at a dinner with chef Philippe Parola on Thursday at Christ the King Jesuit College Preparatory High School in Chicago.
All they have to do is declare a no bag limit on these fish and the fishermen will take care of the problem........
So are they going to replace Michigan’s $10 billion sportfishing industry?
the moral of the story is....
Soon this will be all that we can afford to eat, for those of us not on Food Stamps.
Cajuns will eat anything.
....or so the stereotype goes....
Most carp I’ve eaten taste like mud.
They can’t be caught hook and line (plankton eaters). Only netted or, if you’re feeling adventurous, try bow fishing and sticking them when they try to jump in your lap.
Add enough red pepper and garlic and it will taste great..........
I’m not sure how well Illinoisans would cotton to Louisiana style carp. Blackened seasoning and such isn’t hugely popular in, say, Chicago.
From what I’ve seen, the carp will destroy the sport fishing industry in the Great Lakes if they get there in any numbers. And apparently they multiply like rabbits.
I hear they are served in some restaurants under the phony name “silver fin” - but actually I’ve heard they taste pretty good. Considering farm raised talapia is fed by the poop of farm raised striped bass - I guess anything can make it to the table....
a grade “B” sci-fi thriller where Gordon Ramsey is the hero
Carp... maybe. No one says good things about the snakehead.
These carp aren’t bottom feeders and taste fine.
BUT fishing for them will not prevent them from getting into the great lakes. The fed needs to fill in the canal. But Bongo will listen to Chicago of course, and there goes the fishing industry on the great lakes.
Recycling, man, recycling. Anyone with a cat with an indoor litter box, and a dog, knows about this. To the dog, it's Tootsie Rolls.
More waste of tax dollars
they come in a yellow box that says “Gorton’s” on it
That was just totally unnecessary. Funny, relevant, but totally unnecessary...
These fish are not natural the the US and are very destructive. They should just catch and kill them. I know someone who wanted one for his pond because it had a green growth problem. The state gov’t told him he would have to sign his life away to get one and it would totally kill whatever else that was in there. He passed.