1. Salpa (Sarpa salpa) / Salema

LOCAL NAME
Saippa

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CHARACTERISTICS
A curved belly and back in a silver color. The sides are adorned with horizontal golden stripes.

HABITS AND CURIOSITY
It is a gregarious fish. As an adult, it feeds mainly on algae and is one of the few species able to digest Posidonia leaves. As a young fish it instead prefers small crustaceans. The Salema have a high tolerance to changes in water salinity and are also common in the brackish waters of coastal lagoons.

HOW FAR DOWN DO THEY LIVE?
Usually between 1 to 15 meters, but they can also be found up to 70 meters deep.

HOW BIG DO THEY GET?
It can reach to 35 cm in length, but it can also reach up to 70 cm.

DO THEY HAVE A MINIMUM SIZE FOR CAPTURE?
No.

HOW ARE THEY FISHED?
With nets and traps, but also with trawling.

WHEN CAN THEY BE FOUND?
All year round.

NOTES ON SUSTAINABILITY AND ECOLOGY
The IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) considers this species as not being endangered. Due to its particular type of nutrition (see also the nutritional notes below) this species is not very appreciated. However, it was in the past and at the time could be an abundant resource for both trawling and for the local crafts.

NUTRITIONAL NOTES
It is a rich fish bones, but its flesh has a delicate flavor, good protein content, reduced-fat and is rich in iron, calcium, phosphorus, potassium and vitamin A. Due to its nutrition which consists of seaweed and debris  gutting the fish as soon as possible is recommended. This will make it possible to preserve the delicate flavor of its meat.

Nutritional values ​​per 100 grams
104 kcal
Protein 18.0 g
Fat 2.7 g
Carbohydrates 2.0 g
Water 77.3 g

Percentage distribution of calories
7.70 kcal from carbohydrates (7.40%)
24,30 Kcal from fat (23,37%)
72 Kcal from Protein (69,23%)

 

SALEMA IN THE KITCHEN 

SALEMA WITH SPICES
Serves 2
2 Salema about 250 gr
2 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon of Chinese pepper or Sichuan pepper
Salt
juice of half a lemon
extra virgin olive oil

Method
Scale the salema, gut, wash and dry.
Clean the garlic and crush in a mortar along with the pepper and a pinch of salt, creating a coarse paste.Fill the belly with a little paste, pouring the remaining in the pan with a tablespoon of oil, browning for a few minutes on the fire. Place fish in pan and cook a few minutes on both sides. Pour the lemon juice and finish cooking.
Serve the fish with the tastysauce with its strong flavor of spices and lemon.
Depending on your taste you can flavor the  paste with ginger, chili or curry.