Have You Ever Heard of Baby Flounder?
Today I went to one of my favorite local fish markets, Bywood Seafood Market, and asked the owner, Bill, what was recommended for tonight's dinner. He suggested the "baby flounder" sitting next to the regular flounder, which I soon learned was fluke or, as he called it, "fluke flounder."
Confused? I thought I had it figured out when I wrote a post called Fluke or Flunder - What Is the Difference, but now I'm hearing about "baby flounder." How great is this?
I did a quick search on Google and couldn't find much on "baby flounder," except the expected Wikipedia article on flounder, a bunch of fishing sites, and even a flounder costume on Pinterest. Most articles I read talk about baby flounder regarding size and age, but that's not what I was looking for.
Where Does Baby Flounder Come From?
So I called fishmonger Bill and asked him for more details. He said "baby flounder" has nothing to do with the age of the fish or even the size, although they did appear smaller than the fluke flounder. He explained that this is a species of flounder from the Grand Banks of Newfoundland, a relatively shallow group of underwater plateaus just south and east of Newfoundland.
It's here where the cold waters of the Labrador Current from the north mix with the warm waters coming from the gulf stream. Combine that with the shape of the ocean floor and the abundant nutrients available; you have one of the richest fishing grounds in the world.
Still Can't Find Baby Founder
So I look up "Grand Banks Baby Flounder" on Google, and what do I get back? Not much and almost nothing about "baby flounder" but more about "yellowtail flounder." Everything I find about flounder in the Grand Banks seems to do with Yellowtail Flounder. According to animals.pawnation.com,
Yellowtail flounder … are rusty yellow to olive in color and have red spots on their scales. They grow up to 22 inches in length and weigh around 2 pounds. Yellowtail flounder are found swimming around sandy ocean bottoms of 120 to 300 feet deep.
Is yellowtail flounder the same as baby flounder? I'm still unsure and will continue to ask whenever I talk to chefs or fishmonger friends, but I'm not that concerned. I'll give it a flour coating and pan-fry it in butter with some fresh lemon juice like I would fluke or flounder and see how it goes. (Pan Fried Flounder with Potatoes)
Or I may look for another recipe on the Internet that suggests using Baby Flounder, and yes, there are a few of them listed.
How Does Baby Flounder Taste?
I asked Bill at Bywood Seafoods this question, and he said it is milder than a fluke, which is hard for me to imagine. I think fluke and flounder are some of the mildest tasting fish I've ever eaten, but then he said it was a little like sole, another flatfish belonging to a whole bunch of fish families and is incredibly mild.
You may have heard of Dover sole from Europe, but there is American sole (Achiridae), lemon sole, Pacific Dover sole, and a few more. If you search on Wikipedia for sole, you can find a table at the bottom with all the different groups of flatfish and their species.
So if you see "baby flounder" at your fish market, do me a favor and pepper the fish person with questions and let me know what he or she has to say.
Some of My Favorite Seafood Recipes
- Roasted Cod with Potatoes and Fennel Recipe
- Classic Tuna Casserole with Dill Recipe
- Shrimp Sauce Recipe
- Shrimp and Sweet Potato Curry Recipe
- Bacon Wrapped Scallops Over Coconut Curry Lentils Recipe
- Spanish Shrimp and Rice Recipe
- How to Purchase and Perfectly Pan Fry Branzino
- Grilled or Roasted Fish Tacos Recipe
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