Dairy? No. To produce? No. Flesh? No. Deli? No. Seafood YES!

That’s right, seafood sales have increased more than 30% since the pandemic began, making it the number one food category in grocery stores.

We have heard for years that we should reduce the amount of red meat in our diet and increase the amount of seafood, fruits and vegetables for better health. Well, since Covid-19, people have been taking that advice seriously. Especially my wife.

There are people who follow a ketogenic, vegetarian and gluten-free diet. Some people are on the pescatarian diet (that’s just seafood). There are people who don’t eat face-to-face, whatever that means, and then there’s my wife. She won’t eat unless I go on a diet.

I’m becoming an expert in meatless bean patties, quinoa and lentil salads, and different types of coconut curry. What does this have to do with seafood? Not much. I just like picking on my wife.

Now for seafood. The truth is that seafood sales have increased dramatically. Everyone eats more seafood. Shrimp are the number one seller, with salmon second and tuna third.

Do we have enough shrimp to feed the growing number of seafood eaters? Yes, because Florida has five large commercial shrimp farms and the largest shrimp hatchery in the United States. Without commercial fish farming around the world, we would not have enough seafood of certain types.

We also breed tilapia and catfish in Florida. Many people eat tilapia because it is inexpensive and has a mild taste. Unfortunately, tilapia is low in omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for you, and high in omega-6 fatty acids, which can cause high levels of inflammation in the body. Better alternatives are wild-caught salmon, tuna, mackerel, and sardines. OK, so much for seafood, now let’s cook it.

Tex-Mex shrimp salad

For 4

ingredients

2 teaspoons of olive oil

12 ounce large uncooked shrimp, thawed

8 ounces of frozen corn, thawed

2 1/2 tablespoons of fresh ginger, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

8 ounces canned black beans, drained

1 teaspoon of salted butter

1 teaspoon of sugar

1 cup green onions, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

16 ounces packaged salad mix

1/4 cup fresh coriander, chopped

2 tomatoes, cut into wedges

Directions

Thaw the prawns in a cooler (do not use in water or use fresh). Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add corn, ginger, garlic, and spring onions. Fry for 2-3 minutes. Add the prawns, beans, butter and sugar. Fry for 2½ to 3½ minutes, until the prawns are red on the outside and white on the inside. Salt and pepper. Arrange the salad mixture on a plate and top with the shrimp mixture. Garnish with coriander and tomatoes.

Costa Magoulas is the Dean of Mori Hosseini College of Hospitality and Culinary Management at Daytona State College. Contact him at (386) 506-3578 or costa_magoulas@daytonastate.edu.

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