Here at Urban Fish Farmer we talk a lot about different ideas and plans to create the perfect home scale aquaponics systems. The question does arise from time to time, “What if you want to go bigger?” even better yet, “What if you want to do Aquaponics for profit?”
If you are just starting out these questions may not be in your mind yet, but that does not mean that they are not too far off on the horizon.
The best way to ensure that your plants are organic is to start out by planting your own seeds.
Understand how it works
Some plants lend themselves to home germination better than others. Surefire vegetables include basil, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, chives, leeks, lettuce, onions, peppers, and tomatoes. Some reliable annual flowers are alyssum, cosmos, marigolds, and zinnias. Perennials include Shasta daisies, columbines, and hollyhocks.
Did you ever wonder what happens to all of the clothing that you no longer wear? Times that by all the people on the earth and you have a lot of clothing that no one wears anymore. Somewhere around 4 trillion pounds of textiles each year get thrown into landfills, that is a 4 with 14 zeros behind it.Companies like Dust Factory Vintage clothing are set to make people aware of how many textiles are put into our landfills and provide a solution to the problem.
When I was in Costa Rica last month I noticed that some of the nicer restaurants were using Tilapia as their fish protien when they made their ceviche. Ceviche is a dish typical to many Latin American countries with some slight variations on how it is prepared. In some countries like Mexico, Ceviche is often prepared and served with a tomato base, in other Caribbean countries, and Costa Rica, it is served with vegetables, minus the tomato base. The main similarity is how the fish is prepared. Instead of cooking it on a fire, you let it sit in lime juice and the acid from the juice cooks the fish. This is not to be mistaken for sushi, where the fish is served raw, in ceviche the fish is actually cooked i the lime juice as it changes texture and color when it is done. With all of the fresh sea food in Costa Rica I was a little shocked that they used Tilapia until I found out why. They used the Tilapia becasue of the light meet and texture that is so common with Tilapia fillets, also becasue of its ability to absorb flavor. So needless to say, the other day I gave it the ol’ college try and made some Tilapia ceviche for our friends to munch on while we watched the Rose bowl game at one of our neighbors homes. I grabbed the recipe off of the internet then added my own special touches to make it unique. With the exception of the lime wedges, avocado, chips and cucumber everything else we grew in our garden. I was really blown away on how good it tasted and so were a few others.
Tilapia Ceviche Ingredients
1 1/2 pounds tilapia, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
3/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice, (about 14 limes), plus wedges for serving
2 tomatoes, seeded and coarsely chopped
2 avocados, halved, pitted and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 English cucumber, peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup freshly chopped cilantro
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
Small tostadas, for serving (optional)
Combine fish and lime juice in a large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, and marinate for about 8 minutes; drain, pressing into strainer to remove excess liquid. Return fish mixture to bowl. Stir in onion, tomatoes, avocado, cucumbers, and cilantro. Season with salt, pepper, and hot sauce. Serve immediately with tostadas and lime wedges.
Yesterday I decided to catch one of our larger tilapias so that I could try out a new recipe. Catching the fish is always an experience, especially when you fillet them. I find it easier to cut the head off of the fish entirely so that it is not looking at me while I try to get a clean cut on the meat with no bones. We use every part of the fish that we can. The dog eats the left over skin, why the chickens get the head and insides. What is left over gets buried in the garden and acts as natural fish mulch fertilizer for our plants.
I call the recipe Fiery Tilapia Taco’s w/ Pico.
This recipe serves two but also makes a great appetizer for up to four people. The salsa or pico calls for vegetables that we were growing in the garden that the fish grew up in, mainly because that is what we had on hand. You can mix and match on the salsa is some of the items this recipe calls for are not available.
You will need the following ingredients:
- 1 chopped jalapeno
- 2 40z tilapia filets
- 1 anaheim pepper
- 2 chopped tomatoes
- 2 Tbsp cayenne pepper
- 1 Tbsp ground black pepper
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 1/2 tsp white sugar
- 1 Tbsp garlic powder
- 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro
- 1 whole onion chopped
- 1 cup of sliced cabbage
- 1 lemon juiced
- 2 minced garlic cloves
- 2 Tbsp Sour Cream
- 4 corn tortillas
- 1 cut lime
- 1 chopped red pepper
- In a large mixing bowl place finely chop onion, red pepper, anaheim pepper, jalapeno, cilantro, tomatoes.
- Add 1 tsp of salt, 1tsp of pepper, 1tsp of garlic powder, and 1/2 tsp of sugar and mix in with lemon juice
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees
- In small bowl combine 2 Tbsp Cayenne Pepper, 2 tsp salt, 2tsp black pepper, 2tsp garlic powder, 2 minced garlic cloves then sprinkle fillets with spices.
- Arrange fillets on grill grate with tortillas, and cook for 3 minutes per side.
For each fiery tilapia taco, top corn tortillas with fish, sour cream, cabbage and salsa. Serve with lime wedge.