Liuzhou Laowai

Random thoughts on life in Liuzhou, Guangxi, China

Frozen Fish – Tilapia Trauma

One of the things I miss around here is good fish. Not that we don't have any fish, but most of the fish are freshwater breeds which simply don't taste as good as seawater varieties, so require pepping up with strong flavours. A winter favourite is Suan Cai Yu (酸菜鱼) which is "Fish Hotpot with Pickled Greens" a very spicy Sichuan dish. Another is Zhi Bao Yu ( 纸包鱼) or "Paper Bag Fish" which is a whole fish cooked in a foil pouch with a strongly flavoured sauce mainly consisting of soy sauce.

Zhi Bao Yu

The main fish on offer here is Tilapia (罗非鱼 Luo Fei Yu), a white freshwater fish. These are farmed all over the place. However, there is a problem. These babies are a bit sensitive to temperature. If the water temperature drops below 12C, they start dying. Unfortunately, the temperature around here does sometimes do just that. Here is the Yahoo report for Liuzhou a few minutes ago. And this is the city – the surrounding countryside, where the fish farms are, is colder. And few places have any form of heating.

Yahoo Weather

Last year at this time, China suffered what it calls the Great Snow Disaster. Temperatures dropped to their lowest in living memory; it snowed in places which had never seen snow; and millions were trapped in railway stations as they tried to get home for the Chinese New Year. And millions of fish died. Liuzhou claims to have lost 570 tons which froze to death.

But, don't worry. The authorities are on the case. Liuzhou Aquatic Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Bureau, Finance Bureau and other departments are keeping the fish warm. They are providing "blankets" for the fish in the form of building greenhouses on the farm pens. These mean that in an outside temperature of 10C, the greenhouses are around 25C and the water around 18C.

Result: Happy Warm Fish!

Now I'm just waiting for them to come to build a greenhouse around me. Or put me in a paper bag and steam me!

Tilapia

. This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 7th, 2009 at 3:28 pm and is filed under Food and Drink, Liuzhou Life, Liuzhou News, My Dinners. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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