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Friday, February 9, 2018


Hickory Shad
Photo from: Joe Friday
L. Alosa falax, Eng. shad, alosa, finta. This species of shad is smaller than others averaging 40 cm. in length. It has a thick body with a dark blue dorsal and sliver flanks. The upper jaw is not rounded but notched into which the tip of the lower jaw fits. Young fish have tiny teeth, while adults have none. It is found in the northern Atlantic from Scandinavia to Morocco and in the western Mediterranean.

Empanada with Shad
Photo by: Lord-Williams
It can be a fresh water fish too. In England, it is spotted and found in streams beginning in May where it breeds during the summer and goes back to the ocean in the fall. Although bony, the flesh is highly regarded. The Anón Al-Andalus in the section of  “Advise on Fish” explains that in Seville and Cordova, it was baked in a pot in the oven instead of a tajine. Nola's recipe is for shad pie. 

[Anón/Huici.1966:352:144; Christensen. 1978:61-63; Corbera. 1998:79; ES: Lord. Medieval. "Furn." Sep 22, 14; Nola. 1989:lviii-3; and Villena/Calero. 2002:23a]

See blog titled "Furn," published September 22, 2014 for Nola's recipe for delicious shad pie. 

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