Bangus is a Filipino term for Milkfish, the national fish of the Philippines. Where did it come from? Our Filipino ancestor’s creativity in hunting fish in the ocean and their strategies to produce more fish as their source of food for their community and to their livelihood has helped Filipinos in so many ways. This was true way back, long after we’ve known the process of aquaculture.
Bangus are dominant and popular in the market not only for the common household consumption but also for special occasions. Bangus have shiny scales of silver, from head to tail. They have friendly fins, slim body and almost unnoticeable teeth. Bangus are meaty, has a natural sweet flesh and their jelly belly part has extraordinary creamy and salty taste. Filipinos love to eat bangus. This is evidence by the different recipes made featuring Bangus as a Filipino Favorite.
Bangus can be raised anywhere in the Philippines. It’s easy to raise bangus by creating a system with fresh or brackish water. Female mature bangus spawns millions of eggs just in one night. After the female lays eggs, the hatching process which usually takes 24 hours will happen. The larvae will transport to the pelagic zone which is a seawater rich with phytoplankton with the right salinity under 23C temperature, where they get source of food and oxygen. Other larvae migrate to wetlands of mangroves, and when they reach their adolescence, they go to lagoons and shallow waters where they grow and mature. They eventually go back to the sea.
In order to raise and breed bangus one should have enough working knowledge on the culture methods of bangus whether in the traditional or extensive process.
Wonder why is Bangus so popular in the Philippines? Bangus is already a part of the Filipino Culture and Heritage. It is every Filipino’s favorite dish and it brought the Philippines the fame of being the top aquaculture system known and acknowledged in different parts of the world. Filipinos are very creative in cooking and making different recipes out of bangus.
Here’s a list of all-time favorites and common Bangus Recipes:
• Sweet and Sour Bangus
• Relennong Bangus
• Paksiw na Bangus or Soured Fish
• Inihaw na Bangus or Grilled Fish
• Pritong Bangus or Fried Bangus
• Sinigang na Bangus
• Dinaing na Bangus
In the Philippines, one can easily find Bangus in the market. Once in the marketplace, a great challenge is how to spot a fresh bangus. You know it is fresh when you can see it breathe, the gills are moving upward, and of course, when it’s jumping with the others.
Here are some pointers for you to know in choosing the right bangus in the market.
• Red Shiny Gils
• Glossy Scales
• Black eyeballs
• No unwanted smell
Dagupan City has a big marketplace just across its city hall. It features of fish, meat, fruits and vegetable vendors. This is why locals as well as tourists visit to buy different kinds of fish, some to resell them while most serve them on their tables. Being a Dagupena, I am so much proud of this premier hometown Dagupan that is acknowledged by the world as the pioneer in establishing the process to culture bangus. Bonuan is the best source of bangus in Dagupan City. Bonuan Bangus is best breed that made Dagupan City the Bangus Capital of the World.