Fish cleaning and cooking may not be an intuitive skill, but it can be easily learned. That's why Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) Fisheries Management Biologist Dave Knuth will be at the Cape Riverfront Market this Saturday demonstrating fish cleaning and cooking skills.
"This is an opportunity for people who aren't comfortable cleaning fish to see how easy it really can be, and for others to learn some new skills," Knuth said.
Knuth will be cleaning catfish, Asian carp and crappie and he might even give samples for the crowd to taste. He said the trick to cleaning a fish is getting to know its structure.
"There are specific ways to clean different species of fish. For example, Asian carp have a very different bone structure than many of our native fish," he said.
Last fall, Knuth demonstrated how to clean and cook Asian carp on a KFVS-12 feature to gain awareness for the invasive species. He and other conservation officials hope once people know how to clean and cook the troublesome fish, they will "kill the species with a fork." The first step is getting people to try it and learn how to prepare it with ease. The taste of Asian carp is comparable to tilapia and catfish.
"Sometimes people just need to see something first hand to get the hang of it," Knuth said, adding he will also take the time to interact with the crowd and answer questions.
Fishing is a time-honored tradition in Missouri and a great way to discover nature as a family. Educational programs like fish cleaning demonstrations help to continue that tradition for future generations.
The Cape Riverfront Market runs every Saturday morning through Oct. 27, from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the parking lot at 35 S. Spanish, next to Celebrations Downtown and across from Bel-Air Bar & Grill.
The fish cleaning and cooking demonstrations will be this Saturday, May 19, at 8:30, 9:30 and 10:30.
For more information on where to fish or how to clean and cook fish, go online to mdc.mo.gov.