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Definition: Escolar

Dark brown to black in color, this deep-water fish is found in tropical and temperate waters, and has a vivid white- or cream-colored flesh. Because of its heavy fat content, it's often grilled, broiled, or steamed, as opposed to fried. Escolar can be tricky to identify. It's mistaken for other fish, such as Chilean sea bass, albacore, and oilfish.

It may also be referred to by the names butterfish, walu, sierra, and white tuna.

You may recall this fish from a recent episode of Top Chef.

Photos courtesy of Regulatory Fish Encyclopedia

Join The Conversation
SillyGirl SillyGirl 8 years
Escolar is AWESOME! If you love Chilean sea bass, you will love this too. Hard to find, but usually less expensive. Tls girl is actually not confusing it with oilfish. The type of fat (Gempylotoxin) in escolar cannot be digested by some people. (acts like castor oil) So about 5% of the population will experience ED. FDA once banned the fish in the US but has since lifted it since it affects so few people. Canada requires it to be sold with warning labels though.
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
about the *fish,* not *first*
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
Thanks Yum - there are so many conflicting articles out there about the first, especially since oilfish is often called something else as well. Confusion abounds.
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
this was one of the fish that they had on Top Chef this past week right? it's always interesting to me to see how chefs manage to adapt when there are obviously ingredients that they aren't as familiar with. i used to LOVE chilean sea bass when i ate fish, so i wonder how this one relates
Food Food 8 years
@tlsgirl: I can see where you're coming from. Still, I think that this is related to the fact that escolar is often mistaken for oilfish, which has those effects.
eowynnie eowynnie 8 years
Man, I love fish, but they look so unappetizing when just lying there like that...
aimeeb aimeeb 8 years
What the...
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
You forgot: may cause explosive diarrhea and other unsavory gastrointestinal difficulties.
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