Interesting Recipes - Dolphins or Dolphin Fish?

A view of Guam, from where some delicious recipes originate.
A view of Guam, from where some delicious recipes originate. | Source

Surprise Food Activities

I stopped watching a couple of cooking shows on television when I found out that they promoted giving unhealthy hot dogs to the poor, while they whitewashed the practice by calling the hot dogs protein. While hot dogs may be better than nothing in an emergency, feeding them to the poor every day will make them sicker than they already are. I wish that the TV host and sponsors had acknowledged what they'd actually been doing. Food and public service tricks are not nice.

This is even more upsetting since, when an aunt visited a hot dog manufacturer in Chicago that regularly advertised "no fillers" in its all-meat hot dogs, she saw large boxes of cereal, including the cardboard boxes, tossed into the vats of processing meats.

Look, I eat hot dogs myself once a month or so, but I don't give them to the poor and set up an image to the public that I am giving them roast beef or ham.

My next surprise was reading a book called Capitol Hill Cooks by Linda Bauer, published in 2012 by Taylor Trade Publishing. It contains favorite recipes from all of our Congressional and Senatorial representatives, as well as versions of recipes served during most of the White House Administrations. Overall, the book is very interesting and the recipes good. Some are even unique.

One of the recipes took me aback, because it innocently listed the fish options for the main dish as: skipjack, mullett, dolphin, or island fish. I was of the understanding that we do not eat dolphin in the United States. Dolphins are even registered citizens in one part of Japan.

However, I found an American restaurant chain that really serves fried dolphin sandwiches and grilled dolphin entrees, especially in Florida/ It is the Islamorada Fish Company Restaurant. Not all dolphin species are endangered or threatened, so I learned something in this research.

At-Risk Dolphin Species in Guam

The following species of dolphin are in endangered status in Guam, as per the Guam Department of Agriculture's GCWCS, Chapter 3.

These species should not be harvested for food:

  • Risso’s Dolphin
  • Spinner Dolphin
  • Striped Dolphin

GUAM - Micronesia In the South Pacific

A markerGUAM -
Guam
[get directions]

Wildlife and the Environment Protected In Guam

Reading the recipe a second time, I found that it is the favorite of a US Congresswoman from Guam - Ms. Madeleine Z. Bordallo. That being so, I recognized that dolphin may have been a staple food fish at one time around that island nation. In fact, the Congresswoman may or may not have ever have eaten dolphin meat herself.

The US Naval Base on Guam has won honors for conservation and environmental preservation, indicating the the environment and wildlife are important to the government of Guam. At the same time, Congresswoman Bordallo advocates for the bill, HR 44, that will recognize people from Guam that served in World War II. This is another worthy cause for the good of the people and the island.

Congresswoman Bordallo, elected in 2003, was the fist woman to represent Guam in the US House of Representatives. She serves on the House Committee on Natural Resources, another indication of her concern for the environment, especially since she sits on the Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs.

Ritidian Beach

Guam National Wildlife Refuge
Guam National Wildlife Refuge | Source
A hermit crab on Guam near the wildlife refuge.
A hermit crab on Guam near the wildlife refuge. | Source

Governor's Fish

Here is my own version of the recipe from Guam called Governor's Fish In Coconut Milk. Many versions of the recipe exist, but I like my own - with no dolphin.

Ms. Bordallo's late husband, Ricardo Bordallo, was the controversial Governor of Guam during his lifetime for eight years in non-consecutive terms. He also used to run Ricky's Suburban Club bar and restaurant in the capital of Tamuning.

Cook Time

  • Prep time: 10 min
  • Cook time: 15 min
  • Ready in: 25 min
  • Yields: 4 to 6 Servings
4 stars from 1 rating of Governor's Fish

Ingredients

  • 2 Pounds Fish - Tilapia, Red Snapper, Pacific Cod -- or SHRIMP, Cut raw meat into 2-inch slices (leave shrimp whole)
  • 1/2 Medium Sweet Onion, Sliced thin
  • 1 Green or Red Bell Pepper, Sliced into strips
  • 1 Clove Garlic, Minced
  • 3/4 Cup Water
  • 1/4 Cup White Vinegar
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper, or to taste, (I like the heat.)
  • 1.5 Cups Coconut Milk (thick), Not coconut juice (too thin)
  • Steamed White or Brown Rice Enough for 4 to 6 Servings, Place on stovetop to cook before cutting fish.

Instructions

  • Place all of the ingredients except the coconut milk into a large pot on the stove top over medium-high heat.
  • Cook 15 minutes or until fish is cooked through (do not overcook shrimp, if you choose that seafood). Lobster meat is another possibility - separate cooked lobster meat from shells, add to the pot, and simply heat through.
  • Turn off heat, add coconut milk, stir through, and serve over steamed rice.
  • Serve with hot sauces at the table if desired. In fact, I like to add a little salsa to the top of my serving.

Ritidian Point
Ritidian Point | Source

More About Dolphins as Food in the 21st Century

  • Anyone ready for a dolphin sandwich? The worrying rise of 'bushmeat of the sea' as fishermen also serve up seals and walruses By Lee Moran. 13:01 EST, 4 January 2012

The eating of sea mammals - including seals, sea lions and walruses - is becoming increasingly popular in poor nations across the world. Fishermen struggling to make ends meet, because of a fall in coastal fish catches, are being forced to turn to the more meaty alternatives.

Reference: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2082195/Dolphin-sandwich-Eating-sea-mammals-rise-fall-fish-sees-fishermen-struggling-make-ends-meet.html#ixzz1xbyRPqar Retrieved June 12, 2012.

The Dolphin Fish

Mahi-mahi
Mahi-mahi | Source

Seafood Information

Hubber friends have listed the dolphinfish or Mahi-mahi as the meant alternative for the "dolphin" in the original recipe from Guam and I hope that is the case. I have tasted Mahi-mahi only once and did not care for it - from the image, it looks like a monster to me. Cheers for all of you who love it! And try my own recipe above.

Catching Seafood and Gathering In Guam

© 2012 Patty Inglish

More by this Author


Comments 14 comments

DigbyAdams 4 years ago

I honestly can't believe that any cookbook aimed at American taste buds actually suggested using dolphin as an alternative fish. Where are editors when you need them?


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 4 years ago from North America Author

I was stunned at first. It must have been traditionally used, but I bet much less so now.


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Oh my - I just could not imagine eating a Dolphin any more than my dog. I knew that some people do eat this - and I read your hub about them being citizens in Japan! That's lots better to me:)

I'm shocked they printed that recipe. And I'd love to know which cooking shows have done that - I watch several but I wouldn't knowing they promoted that!


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 4 years ago from North America Author

Hi RealHouseWife - Thanks for visiting and posting. The people on the Japanese island were sure gutsy to register dolphins as citizens. That will help endangered species. People owning pit bulls here might have thought of that in protection of a mis-criticised species - harder to do, tho.

As for tv - look for smithfield ham and its division of john morrel and see what the tv hosts say. I hope not all are playing word games. These are old companies and successful, but gosh - their Polish sausage would be better than hot dogs, but more expensive to give. Smithfield did straighten out immigration problems with workers, as far as I know, so that is commendable.


drbj profile image

drbj 4 years ago from south Florida

Hi, Patty. There is a fish called dolphin in Florida that is also called mahi-mahi (Coryphaena hippurus) which is also known as dorado. The name is often confused with the marine mammal. Perhaps that is the fish, not the mammal, that the author of the recipe was referring to.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 4 years ago from Southern California, USA

There are a lot of things that people used to do traditionally, but that does not make these practices good or proper today. With all the alternatives out there, I find very little need to eat dolphin. As for hot dogs poor people would be better off eating lentils with onions, or bean burritos with veggies. Hot dogs never have to be a staple in your diet, no matter how poor you are. Also, a lot of communities are encouraging farmer's markets to accept EBT cards so poor families can have access to fresh food, and local organizations can start community gardens to help everyone have more access to fresh produce. Eating hot dogs every day is never necessary, no matter how poor people are.


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 4 years ago from North America Author

drjb - Thanks for that insight and I like that possibility much better!

Over the years while studying Indigenous Peoples and settlers, I have found notations of people actually eating the mammal dolphin - Indigenous and Spaniards, but I'd be pleased if it were the Mahi-Mahi on the menus I saw recently. Japanese fishermen do catch and sell dolphins for food and other purposes, we know.

And we know that some dolphin ends up in our canned tuna from time to time.

Hi SweetiePie -- I think culture shock is still possible - Korea supports dog-meat restaurants, the Vietnamese have prepared dogs as food, etc. etc. Japanese mainland and dolphins. Cultural differences, but disturbing to those of the outer circle. I like that the farmer's markets are accepting EBT cards. We're making progress now, gradually.

Thanks for the posts.

(In my recipe version, I reduced the vinegar by half for use with fresh water fish and added some ingredients, also good for fresh water fish. Yikes, thinking about dolphin over rice is still making me cringe.)


peachpurple profile image

peachpurple 4 years ago from Home Sweet Home

Who in the right mind would eat a gentle creature dolphin?! This is inhuman! Hot dogs are common because most hotdogs are made from chicken or pork.


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 4 years ago from North America Author

Thank you, peachpurple - I have an acquaintance from Korea that tells me there is so much starvation in rural areas there, especially in North Korea, that the people would eat absolutely any creature. It's eye-opening to know that people elsewhere in the world from the US use these animals for food, or have done so in the past.

I am reminded of Chef Anthony Bourdain, who in an Arab country could not bring himself to choose a live camel from the camel market to cook. He and his host went to the grocery and purchased frozen camel meat.


kashmir56 profile image

kashmir56 4 years ago from Massachusetts

Hi Patty, I enjoyed reading this information within this well written hub . I am glad i do not eat hot dogs or dolphins. How could you eat a dolphins they are so cute and smarter than some humans .

Vote up and more !!!


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 4 years ago from North America Author

Now I am wondering how I could ever eat a hot dog, either. lol


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 4 years ago

It"s not Flipper that is being eaten. It's the Dolphin fish which is entirely different. As for hot dogs, I adore them.


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 4 years ago from North America Author

Others agree. I don't think I'll make the recipe with hot dogs, either.


Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty Inglish, MS 4 years ago from North America Author

A recent update shows that people in 3rd world countries are eating dolphin and other marine mammals with higher frequency in greater numbers in the 2010s than ever before (added to Hub).

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working