How do we of the land, help those of the sea.
How do the inhabitants of 30% of the planet’s surface help the inhabitants who live on 70% of it?
The Guide to Fish started as a university assignment. It grew from an idea and assignment in a subject about Desktop publishing. I created a tiny book of 20 pages about 8 different fish species and what to look for when shopping for them. It was an embryo of an idea that was naïve but passionate.
Fish has always been a topic that caused frustration with many people I knew. It can be hard to cook; friends were unsure of what to choose, others didn’t know how to cook it.
I wanted to talk about fish to people in the way that I had learned about it. I learned a lot about food in general through working in restaurants, through understanding flavour and texture and cooking technique. I wanted to convey this love and mad interest (I could talk about food forever, just ask my friends) but it grew into something much more when, from my reading, I became more aware of depleting fish stocks and of the idea that some fish species are better to buy than others.
What I came to realise is the ocean and what’s in it is an enormous subject. It’s so big you can’t put it all in one small book to take shopping, but what you can do is create a starting point. From that point, you can encourage conversation about what to buy, how to cook and thus, create an awareness of the power of the purchase and help people to consume with conscience.
When it comes to fish the best and most obvious place to start is the ocean and with the help of people who care about it dearly – the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) – I based the choice of fish species in the Guide to Fish on their research. Then, by turning research into what I hope will become consumable conversation, I created the Guide to Fish.
I want the Guide to focus on shopping for fish and have profiled each species with when it is in season, what the fresh fillet will look like, its texture when cooked, how best to cook it and have included wine and beer recommendations.
The Guide to Fish will get you talking to each other, to the fishmonger, to the person next to you at the counter. The Guide to Fish is about knowledge for all of us so we know that as consumers with conscience, we are looking after the ocean and therefore, the world we live in.