How to Choose Safe Seafood
Seafood has long been a popular favourite among food connoisseurs, critics and plain old foodies from across the planet. Just think of the sheer variety in terms of the food products and the cooking styles! The three main concerns with seafood however are food allergies, mercury poisoning and food poisoning. So how do you make sure which types of Seafood are safe and which ones are not? What can you do to make sure that there is nothing fishy about the fish on your plate? Let’s find out.
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Lobsters, crabs, scallops, shrimps, clams, oysters, calamari and last, but definitely not the least, fish. These are the most popular seafood items across the world. But before you have them though, the following are the few tips to keep in mind to ensure that your seafood is safe for you.
- Try not to have it raw – Cook it well and cook according to instructions. Steaming, boiling and frying are the best ways to ensure that you’re seafood item is cooked. However, if you like having raw seafood items in the form of sushi, sashimi, nigiri or ceviche, make sure you eat these at a very reputable restaurant, and don’t even think about preparing them at home.
- Make sure it is fresh – Drive down to the local market and pick only what comes in that day. If you have a drive back that is longer than two hours pack all the seafood in an ice-box filled with fresh ice or, ask your fishmonger for transportation tips. If you don’t stay in a place that has easy access to seafood, order it online. Fresh lobsters, crabs, scallops, shrimps, clams, oysters and calamari can all be delivered to your doorstep. Most outlets will ensure that your delivered seafood item has been caught within 24 hours and packed safely.
- Defrost Frozen Seafood Properly – If you’re using frozen seafood, follow the defrosting instructions to the t. Don’t just chuck your frozen lobsters or scallops on your counter top till they’re of room temperature. Defrost them in the fridge or find recipes that allow you to use frozen seafood.
- Order pre-cooked or ready to eat seafood, especially if you’re unsure about how to cook them. Lobsters, crabs, scallops, shrimps, clams and oysters are all available online. You can get shellfish tasting platters, frilled lobster tails, bacon wrapped scallops, crab cakes, seafood bisques, mussels or oysters with dips. It’s a long, long list and you’ll be spoilt for choice. Look into local restaurants and reputed online stores.
- Choose healthy fish like Salmon, Sardines, Anchovies and Tilapia. Not only are they easy to cook, you’ll get your required amount of protein and omega-3 fatty acids from most of them. Also these fish and oysters, clams and scallops have the least amount of mercury in them.
So follow these tips to stay safe and enjoy your seafood without fear.