What Is Best Alternative To Hilsa Fish?
If you are in North America then you are certainly aware that how difficult to get fresh Hilsa or Ilish Mach (in Bengali). Either you get frozen whole Hilsa or frozen cleaned Hilsa pre-cut into pieces. Either of the varieties loses its taste overtime and scares me off by looking at the packaging date. Some of them are even more than a year old. Also, not to mention how expensive they are. So what is the alternative to get a reasonably fresh hilsa fish without compromising on quality and price?
In North America, you will get a fish called American Shad. Shad is similar looking fish to Hilsa and it tastes too. I’ve tried Shad many times and If I were asked to rate this fish I would say about 90% similar in taste and texture. They are usually available in the US and Canada during early summer in the month of May through June. You need to look out specially for this fish in your nearest store as they are available only for a short period of time with limited avaiblaity. It’s also 1/3 of the price you pay for Bangladeshi frozen hilsa. Really cheap.
What I do is I buy them fresh from market (not to mention, but you certainly you know how to buy a fresh fish by looking under the fish gills) and stock and freze them for about 6 months supply. Better than one year old frozen Bangaldeshi hilsa.
Shad fish can be prepared the same way you prepare all Hilsa recipes.
See some of them here…
- Hilsa Fish Fry
- Hilsa Fish Bhapa
- Hilsha Fish Plain Jhol
- Doi Ilish
- Lau Ilish
- Ilish Sorshe Jhol
- Kachu Ilish
Let me know if you’ve ever tried Shad fish and how did you like it.
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