Monday, July 2, 2012

Bonuan Bangus of Pangasinan

The Milkfish known as Bangus in the Philippines is hardly, or not even mentioned among the species of fish for food in international cookbooks.  Of course, that's aside from those authored by Filipinos. The most delicious of this kind of fish comes from Pangasinan and is referred to as Bonuan Bangus.  Once one has tasted this bangus, it will be hard to savor any other bangus that come from other places.  It can be cooked in different ways and still retain its delicious flavor.  A favorite recipe for this fish is inihaw (grilled) stuffed with minced tomatoes and onions.  The Bonuan Bangus is one that you can easily tell apart from other bangus with the taste of its stomach fat alone.

The Bonuan Bangus are raised in ponds called "palaisdaan" from their fingerling size.  When the fish reach the size of one foot or larger, they are harvested and sold at the market.  There is no reference why it was called Milkfish but this could be the reason as their size at one foot or so is too young against the size of a full-sized adult bangus that could grow to six (6) feet.

I have tasted the adult bangus and it does not have any flavor even close to that of its young.  The flesh is tough and has many tendon or muscle-like meat around it.

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