Welcome to the Cafe’ today! Oh, I know…I’ve been sooo quiet lately. Well, you see, I’ve just been sooo busy…it all started with a little fishing survey that we received from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in late March…the “Department” asked us, in a very nice way, of course, to document our fishing catch last year…
Well…last year wasn’t really a great catch year for us, as you probably know…
i’m oooh sooo very appreciative that the “Department” thought of us and all, but i’m just not understanding why they decided to send-out a survey requesting us to document our catch the ONE year that we came home from our fishing trip with just a couple of teeny tiny Pacific Cod…do you?
Of course, being the Alaskan that I am, I decided to set my pride aside and complete the survey. i know, i know…it was awfully big of me to do so, particularly when the survey would very likely become public record which means that anyone and their neighbor could take note of the fact that we caught 2 teeny tiny Pacific Cod last year…
Anyways…just so you understand what happened…i promptly placed the survey in our “active” pile of mail. The “active” pile is the pile of mail that needs to be addressed, but perhaps not immediately like this second immediately. The active pile just stays “active” while we address other priorities. You know what i mean? Well, things just got sooo busy…really out-of-hand busy after we received that survey…
Well that busy-ness just worked itself right thru April. What can i say? There were all kinds of things that had to be immediately addressed like gardening, for example. Ohhh…i did ohhh sooo much gardening…take a peek and see for yourself….
See! Isn’t it important that I got that done as soon as possible?
Well, of course, there was the garage too…i had to clean and reorganize our entire garage and you know how long it takes to do that especially when you pay attention to all the garage details…
Before i knew it…April had passed and May arrived along with a big envelope from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game…when I opened the envelope, the contents were oh sooo familiar…i’m sure that you can guess what it was…a fishing survey…in fact, the survey was identical to the one we received in March…
This time, however, there was a nice 8×10 color chart of “Saltwater Species Commonly Found in Alaska” enclosed. The attached cover letter noted that the color chart had been provided to us as a special gift for our efforts in “completing the enclosed survey”…
Oh dear, i felt sooo guilty…i know that the Alaska Department of Fish and Game has no idea about how busy I’ve been….sooo busy that i just hadn’t got to the survey yet. Of course, i had every intent on completing it!
Since we received this really nice chart with some of my MOST favorite fish on it like King and Sockeye Salmon and Pacific Halibut, i felt like i needed to complete the survey oooh sooo pretty much soon…you know what I mean?
Well this really nice chart was so nice i spent time studying it for awhile, particularly the section on Pacific Halibut. According to the nice chart, Pacific Halibut is known as Hippoglossus Stenolepis.
The chart described Hippoglossus Stenolepsis as “More elongated than most flatfishes, with width being about one-third the length. Adults have both eyes on their dark or upper side. Color on the dark side tends to assume the coloration of the ocean bottom. The underside is lighter, often white.”
Well in all honesty Susitna Cafe’ friends, i was a bit surprised when i read the chart. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game just didn’t have their facts straight about the Pacific Halibut. Can you believe it? Believe you me, i have certainly caught my fair share of Pacific Halibut over the years except for last year, so i know alot about halibut and their definition was definately not accurate and i’m not understanding what they were thinking!
SO, I decided to provide some assistance to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game…afterall, it’s really my civic duty isn’t it? i must admit that it wasn’t easy documenting the fact that we had caught 2 teeny tiny Pacific Cod last year as i worked to complete the survey… BUT, I felt oh so good that I was able to provide the Alaska Department of Fish and Game with difficult to obtain knowledge about the Pacific Halibut…the kind of knowledge that only an experienced and well seasoned Alaskan fisherman can provide…in fact, there was a really nice “Comments” section on the survey form in which I was able to include all kinds of useful information like the following:
Pacific Halibut (Image Courtesy of National Park Service)
- the Pacific Halibut’s real scientific name is flatius fishius;
- flatius fishius are related to flounder (but won’t admit it);
- Pacific Halibut are a very optimistic fish…in fact, they’re ALWAYS looking up; and,
- most importantly, flatius fishius are sensitive about the “weird eyes” thing, so a fisherman should never, never stare at them…
I’m sure that the Alaska Department of Fish and Game will use this information and correct their chart, don’t you agree? In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if we get a corrected version of the chart in the mail sometime soon…
So, that’s why I’ve been sooo busy my Susitna Cafe’ friends. But, I’m back now! And, I’m here to share all the important facts about flatius fishius with you…like the fact that Pacific Halibut are real team players…they’re happy baked, broiled or grilled…and, oooh sooo dee-li-ciousss in Susitna Cafe’ Flatius Fishius Salad!
Susitna Cafe’ Flatius Fishius Salad
1 pound halibut fillet
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/2 Tablespoon spice mix (gourmet salt, fresh ground mixed peppercorns, dried minced garlic)
1/4 cup red onion, minced
2 Tablespoons fresh Italian parsley, chopped
1/2 Tablespoon capers
2 Tablespoons Miracle Whip Salad Dressing (or mayonnaise)
Let’s Make the Salad
Place the halibut fillet (skin side down) on a foil lined baking pan. Rub olive oil on the surface of the fillet. Sprinkle the salt, ground pepper and dried garlic spice mixture on top of the prepared fillet.
Broil for about 10 minutes or til the fillet is still moist but the fish is easily flaked apart with a fork. Set the broiled fillet aside to cool.
Meanwhile, this is a good time to mince the red onion and chop your fresh Italian parsley. Toss the onion, parsley and capers into a mixing bowl.
Now that your halibut fillet is cool, let’s remove/peel the skin from the fillet. Flake the halibut into your mixing bowl containing the red onion, parsley and capers. Add the Miracle Whip (or mayonnaise) to the bowl and stir all the ingredients together.
Chill. Serve on your favorite crackers. Mmm…Sooo…Goooood!
Cook’s Note: This is a great recipe for leftover halibut (baked, grilled or broiled) too. You can even serve a scoop of halibut salad atop a fresh green tossed salad and wa-la! you have a wonderful dinner ready to serve with crusty french bread…yummmm!
Traveler’s Note: Our most successful halibut fishing trips often take place in Resurrection Bay off the coast of Seward, Alaska with Profish-N-Sea Charters.