Fish is never far from the mind when thinking of food in Barbados. Despite the small diversity of species, it is a staple in our diet, important to our economy and historically of great cultural importance as we see every year at the Oistins Fish Festival.

Not wanting to miss out on all the fun, we set up our stand in Oistins Fish Market and were happy to see many faces, old and new, passing by to say hello and find out some top tips on how to make sustainable choices when it comes to fish!

Don’t worry if you didn’t get a chance to stop by, our sustainable seafood pocket guides have all the info on how to make better choices for your health and the environment. Our top three tips are to buy species which:
– Are abundant in our local waters
– Are managed and caught in ways that don’t damage the environment or other species

As well as meeting local fisherfolk and families, our innovative Chef Rhea Gilkes held an ‘East meets West’ cooking demo. Using two wonderfully tasting and very sustainable local fish (Lionfish and Triple Tail) to make a very cheap and easy 4 ingredient Japanese inspired fish tempura, which we served with Caribbean TreatsSmokey Tamarind and Golden Apple chutneys.

(We will be posting the recipe for these on our instagram and Facebook accounts in the coming weeks, so stay tuned!)

On Easter Monday, the knives were out as usual as the the island’s most skilled vendors took to the stage skinning, filleting and deboning their way through the various species in our markets. The competition was fierce with so many skilled men and women fighting for the top spots. We were proud to partner with Cafe Luna and sponsor the prize for the 4th place of the Cultural and Traditional Flying Fish boning competition which was won by the very talented Jacqueline Norville.

4th Placed Contestant in the Boning Competition Jaqueline Norville with Slow Fish Bdos Director Nikola Simpson

Although Oistins Fish Festival is over for another year, we still have fish at the top of our agenda. May starts off with World Tuna Day and we encourage you as always to vote with your wallet and buy the fish with the cleanest journey from bait to plate that supports healthy oceans both for now and our future generations. Why not try going a whole month without tuna and eating other species such as Lionfish, Flying Fish and Kingfish instead? Let us know how you get on and don’t forget to share your favourite recipes with us!

Later on in the month we our resident Marine Biologist and Director of Slow Fish Barbados Nikola Simpson will be flying to Genova, Italy, to attend the International Slow Fish Conference. It is a wonderful opportunity to share ideas, stories and solutions to many of the environmental, economic and health problems facing communities with important fishing cultures and industries. More about this in Issue #2!

We leave you this month with a fun fishy fact. Enjoy – and have a wonderful month!