Lionfish. Photo by Alexander Vasenin (CC 3.0)


Lionfish originally from the warm waters of the South Pacific and Indian Ocean, known for their showy venomous fins, can eat about 10x their weight in a single day. With no natural predators in Atlantic waters, the invasive lionfish have been decimating native marine populations in alarming numbers.

Spur Tree at Norman’s Cay a Manhattan eatery, has come up with a delicious way to combat the problem. Cook them up and put them on the menu.

Be very careful when you remove the venomous spines. Screen grab via Florida Fish & Wildlife video


The New York Daily News: The Lower East Side lounge, which specializes in Jamaican and Caribbean cuisine, is currently the only restaurant in New York City that regularly stocks lionfish, and one of only two in the Northeast U.S.

As more diners gravitate towards sustainable, eco-friendly food options, invasive species are gaining cache. At Spur Tree at Norman’s Cay, Jamaican-born chef and co-owner Sean John fries the whole fish — minus those venomous scales, of course — and serves it escoveitch style, with a spicy dressing of pickled hot peppers and onions.

Whole fried lionfish from Fish Fish of Miami, Florida. Photo by Food Republic (CC 4.0)

“It’s a sweet, white flaky fish with a taste similar to a parrotfish or a snapper,” John says. “It’s super healthy, very delicate and tender, and it’s easy to cook it just about any way you can think of.” Read more from The New York Daily News here…


posted by Mai Armstrong for the Working Harbor Committee