Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Wild Steelheadā€¦ Salmon or Trout?

Wild Pacific Steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss)

Pacific Steelhead Salmon are the anadromous (migrating) ocean version of Rainbow Trout. Unlike Eastern or Great Lakes Steelhead, Pacific Steelhead grow to a significantly larger size. Steelhead is similar in size to Sockeye Salmon averaging 9-12lbs at maturity (Line caught record exceeds 30lbs). Steelhead resembles King (Chinook) Salmon in color and texture, but with a decidedly light, clean flavor.

Steelhead is unusually high in Omega 3 Oils. The oil content of a typical Wild Pacific Steelhead is higher than most Chinook Salmon. There is no large commercial fishery for Wild Pacific Steelhead, making them quite rare. Most commercially available Steelhead is farm raised, with the attendant issues associated with that practice.

Steelhead migrate from the ocean into freshwater to spawn, and then swim back out to the ocean again, returning to spawn again over their lifetime. Since Steelhead are not semelparous (meaning they do not die after spawning) they are not an "official" Pacific Salmon.

A favorite of the finest chefs in the Pacific Northwest, Pacific Steelhead are another of the region's best-kept seafood secrets. Pacific Steelhead is prized for its firm meat and flavor. There is no large commercial fishery for Steelhead, making them quite rare. Pacific Steelhead also benefit from having very high Omega 3 oil content, higher than most Pacific Salmon. Smoked Steelhead Lox are considered a special delicacy.

Our Wild Steelhead are Boneless, Once Frozen, and available as Whole Fillet Sides or Pre-Portioned Fillets in 6oz or 8/9oz sizes. Visit our Online Store for our current selections.

Looking for Salmon & Steelhead Recipes? Visit our Recipe Page!


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