Monkfish (Lophius americanus)
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Biology: This unusual-looking fish, with its large mouth and head, is found from the Grand Banks to North Carolina. Monkfish spend most of their time lying still on sandy, muddy, and shell bottoms. They attract prey with a "lure" dangling from above their heads. They eat fish, including other monkfish, crustaceans, and even birds and ducks. They are able to consume prey that is longer than themselves. Predators of the monkfish include swordfish, sharks, and skate.
Sustainability status: The monkfish stock is healthy and harvested at a sustainable rate. More information is available here.
Harvest: We catch monkfish using gill nets. Monkfish can also be caught using bottom trawls.
Preparation: With its meaty white flesh, monkfish is known as the "poor man's lobster." Tail fillets can be braised, fried, grilled, steamed, or broiled.
Nutritional facts: Excellent source of niacin, vitamins B6 and B12, potassium, protein, phosphorous, and selenium. A 100-gram portion of monkfish contains 14.48 grams of protein, 36.5 mcg selenium, 1.52 grams of fat, 76 calories, 18 mg sodium, and 25 cholesterol.
Available in whole form, cheeks, or tails, year-round.
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