Forgotten fish go to the top of the menu

Tayler NealeAlbany Advertiser

Great Southern Grammar students were given a culinary class by esteemed local chef Silas Masih that focused on underused local fish last week.

The lesson was part of a sustainability program, Prepare Produce Provide, run by the WA Fishing Industry Council.

WAFIC’s John Duffy said the program aimed to educate the younger generation of potential chefs.

“Home economics and hospitality students are at the front line of telling the public about fish,” he said.

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“The fishermen catch it and they supply it but they’re not the ones that actually present it.

“So we thought we would target home economics students and bring a fisherman with a chef on school visits to actually talk about the industry and sustainability.”

Mr Duffy said the program promoted the use of underused fish.

“We focused on lesser-known fish species, which generally tend to be the cheaper ones,” he said

“So you can educate people about cheaper fish — that’s one of the things that puts people off, is spending $40 on a kilo of fish and then overcooking it.

“We can get them to help financially and economically sustain our fishing.”

The students created anise myrtle soda-battered kingfish with mountain pepperberry sherbet, and garam masala and chick pea-floured fish in turmeric and cardamom coconut sauce.

Mr Masih said adding colour to the cooking gave it more appeal.

“I think the common theme here is education — what WAFIC is doing is educating our next generation of chefs and hospitality people, which is really important in the value of underutilised fish,” he said. “It’s simple preparation and adding a bit of wow factor to it makes a massive difference.

“That’s my goal, is to give everybody a little bit of inspiration in using some spice and some flavour to bring it all together.”

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