Thursday, 23 September 2010
You might not think that this is a very appetising looking fish. I can assure you it is, and very much sought after.
This English site sells roughly 100gm portions of vacuum packed smoked eel for £6.45 (that's P450/$10/100gm, or P4500/$100 per kilo)
Viktor (phone (+63 920 287 2450) sells exactly the same self-smoked stuff without all the fancy packaging for P401/$7/kilo. It's the same species as American or European eels (or at least one of the two - you have to count their vertebrae to tell the difference, so good luck to you).
The eels come from the small river that leads up from the mangrove swamps at Pilar, to Maasin in the middle of the island, and they are caught there when they migrate upstream to breed; with fish baskets, and then thumped on the head with a bolo, as you can see.
Eels are becoming very rare in Europe, because of pollution of the major rivers, which is why they are expensive. These local ones are a lot cheaper, but still as delicious.