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The Pacific Herring (zool.: Clupea harengus pallasi) belongs to the zoological family of herrings, shads, sardines and menhadens (zool.: Clupeidae) in the order of herrings (zool.: Clupeiformes). The pacific herring has an elongated oval body covered with thin scales. It has a protruding lower jaw and plain gills. Its soft ray dorsal fin sits almost in the middle of the back, the caudal fin is forked symmetrically. The colour of its back is dark grey to dark green and changes gradually to a shiny silver at the belly. The Pacific Herring is seldom larger than 40 cm. It is a salt water fish that lives in swarms all over the Pacific Ocean from Japan to Korea and from Alaska to California.

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Properties of Herring


The filets constitute between 40 and 55 % of the total weight of Pacific Herring. It has a relatively high fat content. With 15 – 17,8 % fat herrings are oily fish and turn rancid easily. They must be eaten very fresh or preserved early. Herring has a high content of the vitamins D and B12.

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Preparation of Herring

Raw herring should only be eaten if it was deep-frozen before. Otherwise an infection with Helminthiasis through the larvae of Anasakis genera is possible. Herring is a delicate food fish that is often used for smoking and marinating. Fresh herrings can be pan-fried whole or as filet. It should only be slightly salted and seasoned with a few dashes of fresh lemon juice. Pan-fried herring goes well with cooked potatoes in parsley butter.

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