Escolar...???

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by fryguy, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. fryguy

    fryguy

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    Just got some Escolar in. Looking for some words of of wisdom....Have'nt had much experience with it and was lookig for some menu ideas, sauces, preperations, whats works with this fish
     
  2. durangojo

    durangojo

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    you do know that escolar is referred to as the 'exlax' fish don't you? ingesting it causes a condition called 'keriorrhea'...google it...it ain't pretty!..a few symptoms are headache, nausea,cramping, diarrhea, orange oily droplets...lots of fun stuff! personally i wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole(fishing?)...can you send it back? at the very, very, very, very least you should warn or tell your customers what kind of fish it is...if you tell them the side effects who in their right mind would even order it though...your call, but i'd be calling my food rep or whoever you got it from.

    joey
     
  3. rexxar

    rexxar

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    I personally love it seared

    What i was told was that the max portion you should serve is 3oz after that people start getting gas and other side effects

    funny story:

    At my first kitchen job, we had an excess of fish by the end of saturday service. The chef hands me a hotel of various fish and tell me to batter them for staffmeal, as he walks away he says " the ones on the right side are escolar". At that time i had no idea what escolar did to people so i just fired em all and put them up. By the end of the night people were farting all over the place, including me. ( i think i ate like 4 of them)
     
  4. fryguy

    fryguy

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    Holly Molly thanks for the heads up.......I think I'm feeling a little sick and I have'nt even tried any yet......or will I EVER....
     
  5. durangojo

    durangojo

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     chef rexxar,

    so are you saying that a little bit of poison is okay then?

    joey

    fryguy, escolar is used mainly in sushi rolls where the portions are small....still, arsenic is arsenic so why would you even want to serve escolar to a customer knowing that there is ANY possibility of harm....however small...as chefs,we need to be accountable for what we serve, period.....
     
  6. fryguy

    fryguy

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    you would think my fish guy would give me a heads up....just gave him a call for return....I can just see it now, all my old country club members making it half way to thier cars when.....OOOPPS.....hey honey I think I just crapped my pants 
     
  7. zoebisch

    zoebisch

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    I was curious about this fish (never heard of it) and then did some digging.  Apparently there are some very very gross side effects (google escolar and orange but please don't have eaten recently) which result from the waxy esters that the fish itself cannot metabolize but stores in it's flesh.  It's reported that some individuals are much more sensitive to this than others and it basically can work through the system quickly and sometimes violently.  It reminds me of that stuff they put on the market they were frying potato chips in where people got some nasty GI problems and I think they pulled it?  Also reminds me of the first time I harvested Jerusalem Artichoke (sunchoke) in the fall and ate a heaping mound of them.  Boy was I sorry! The Inulin is indigestible until it gets way down and then it you get all blown up from the bacteria in your colon munching on it.  Granted that's a bit different but somehow oddly the same.  The remedy seems to have been a spring harvest at the expense of sweetness I think some conversion goes on and you get less Inulin.  The rule of thumb I have seen mentioned here which can be found on the web is to keep portion sizes very small.  Sounds like a darn tasty fish...I wouldn't mind trying some Nigiri made with it...but personally I wouldn't have the guts to serve it just like I won't serve certain Boletus mushrooms to individuals because of random sensitivity.  I'll eat them and my family and close friends have passed the litmus test but I would not be willing to take a chance on the random.
     
  8. chefedb

    chefedb

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    I wrote about this west coast fish a few monthes ago .. I call it the Exlax Fish as it woill make you really go. You are not supposed to eat over 5 or 6  ounces of this  Let The  Buyer Beware. Any time the fish guys find a real cheap fish, they market it.  At one time it was Tiapia, but it's to expensive now because they created a market for it.Now it's farm raised.
     
  9. chefbuba

    chefbuba

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    Several years back when I was movie catering, we were working on the same street in LA as another crew, their caterer served escolar for lunch, sent about 30 people to the hospital via ambulance and was out of business shortly thereafter.
     
  10. someday

    someday

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    lol, guys...no need to over react about escolar. Yes, it can give you diarrhea, but as long as you limit the portion size most people are fine. I hardly find it fitting to call feeding someone escolar "poison." Give me a break. 

    You could do a nice appetizer with it (thus limiting the portion size)...treat it like you might tuna. We did a nice appetizer with it at a place I worked at, we did a quick citrus cure, then crusted it in black-pepper and fennel (crusted and seared on one side only, keeping most of the fish raw) and served it with a roasted lemon puree, pink peppercorns, verigated lemon supremes and fried parsley. It was excellent. 

    If you truly don't feel comfortable serving it, then of course don't. Arsenic? Where is that idea coming from?
     
  11. chefhow

    chefhow

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    I used to serve Escolar as an app on my menu and it was my #1 app seller and I never had a complaint.  Rolled in Furykaki and seared, sliced and served with White Truffle Rissoto.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2012
  12. durangojo

    durangojo

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    "most people are fine"...interesting.  give yourself a break or at least your loyal customers. while yes keriorrhea  may only affect a certain percentage, do you really want to risk being in that percentile?  have you yourself eaten escolar?  experienced the ill effects first hand?  i guarantee that if you have, your moral compass would not allow you to expose anyone else no matter how small the chance.  assuming of course yours is intact and in good working order. the jury is out on this controversial fish but why in the world would/could you even entertain the thought of serving something that only 'may' cause symptoms in 'some' people. any inflammation in the body is not a good thing......yum...taste the danger?

    joey

    i do admit that the word 'poison' may be a bit strong, but it was used to push a point
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2012
  13. chefhow

    chefhow

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    Seriously?  Peanuts kill people, are you going to start to preach about how we shouldnt serve them in our establisments?  How about things like raw veggies that havent been treated, they can give you e. Coli, Salmonella... 

    I have eaten too much Escolar and while it wasnt fun it wasnt the end of the world.  I have eaten bad cheese from a pizza parlor and ended up in the hospital with Salmonella poisoning, it didnt stop me from eating cheese.  As chefs its our duty to INFORM our guests but its not our job to dictate to them what they can and cant eat. 
     
  14. durangojo

    durangojo

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    so, DO you warn your customers of the 'possible' side effects of eating escolar? just as peanuts, peanut oil, and raw oysters to name a few, are disclosed, do you disclose? seems to me that all of a sudden or recently there is an increasing rise of people with eating, stomach or digestive issues/disorders....crohn's disease, ibs, celiac...yes, it certainly is our duty to inform our customers and to be accountable....amen brother!

    joey
     
  15. squirrelrj

    squirrelrj Banned

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    So i'm to assume you warn or warned your customers about the possible side effects of every item on your menu? because they all pose a risk of getting someone sick, in reality.

    We serve Escolar during the summer (7 oz portions, grilled) and haven't had a complaint, ever.
     
  16. greenguy

    greenguy

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    I've heard that a lot of sushi restaurants sell escolar under the name "White Tuna" or "Super White Tuna," although at other places white tuna just means albacore.  Still doesn't stop me from ordering it haha.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  17. coastalwanderer

    coastalwanderer

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    With the current outbreak of illness due to ahi here in the US, I think that any possible effects of food we serve should be made clear to people at the outset. 
     
  18. chefedb

    chefedb

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    I agree 100%. If you don't in this day and age you leave yourself and your place wide ope to lawsuits.  No place  on its menu says "Eat at your own risk to eveything" 
     
  19. chefhow

    chefhow

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    Actually I did, on my menu was a warning about the effects of eating raw or undercooked fish.  As to specifically calling out Escolar, if I did that I would have to have done it for EVERY thing on the menu.
     
  20. snealy

    snealy

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    The undercooked or raw fish warning does not really relate to the "problem" with Escolar.