When it comes to eating sharks, the fin normally comes to the mind of the gourmand. But one chef in Bali is setting out to change that. He's serving up shark meat, but, no fins. Let's take a look.
Shark fin soup is considered a prized delicacy in Asia unlike the meat which has little value due to its toughness and pungent smell. But Chef Budi Susilo in Bali aims to change that perception with his Pak Item Restaurant in Bali that specializes in shark meat dishes.
[Susilo "Mr Black", Chef]:
"I came up with the idea while working at a cruise ship in Caribbean and discovered people there ate shark meat. It was tasteless. When I returned, I saw none of the restaurants here serve shark meat. So, I opened my restaurant and tried to be creative with shark meat."
Despite the popularity of shark's fin, Budi says the rest of the meat has been wasted and thrown away because most people do not have the right recipe for the fish. The response from the customers has been good since he started it in 2005.
[A Teng, Tourist]:
"This is my first visit to this restaurant. It tastes good."
Susilo buys his daily supply of sharks from local fishermen in Bali. It is relatively cheaper than other fish as most of the sharks caught are too small for the restaurants selling shark fin. The chef uses the blacktip reef shark that are less than four metres long for his dishes.
However, not everyone is impressed by his efforts. Indonesian environmentalists have protested against the killing of local sharks and are working to draft legislation to protect them. Indonesia is considered one of the main culprits when it comes to over-fishing sharks and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) says even low-value sharks were being discarded at sea, either whole or with fins removed.
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