Types of Salmon

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Salmon in all its forms is a favorite of gourmet chefs and moms alike.
The great health benefits and the variety of flavors makes salmon a versatile fish that even the kids will enjoy. Knowing the distinguishing characteristics among the different types of salmon will help you find your favorite salmon.

Geography

  • Of the many types of salmon, they are most often broken down into region of origin. Atlantic salmon is most common in Northern Europe and along the Atlantic region of the eastern United States. Because Atlantic salmon was initially harvested in Norway, many types of Atlantic salmon are labeled "Norwegian salmon." The rest of the world's salmon originates in the Pacific region, most notably Alaska and Canada. Some Pacific salmon is also harvested or farmed in the American Northwest.

Types

  • Experience the different flavors of salmon by explore the many types of salmon. King Salmon, or Chinook salmon is most notable for its flesh which ranges in color from white to a deep red color. Chum, one of the least common types of fish, is also called dog salmon for it's dog-like teeth. Chum has a pale to medium-colored flesh that sets it apart in flavor. Coho salmon, also known as silver salmon, has a vibrantly colored red flesh and an especially silver skin. Sockeye is most notable for its
    bright red-orange flesh and deep flavor. Finally, pink salmon is the most common Pacific salmon with a very light colored flesh and its low fat content.

Warning

  • Regardless of which type of salmon you prefer, it's important to know if you're getting farm-raised or wild caught salmon. Although nearly all Atlantic salmon is farmed, you should know that it is very likely that farm-raised salmon has added hormones which contain harmful ingredients. Some of these hormones have been linked to different types of cancers. Additionally, nearly all farm-raised salmon has dye added to give it the distinguishing color common in all types of salmon.

Benefits

  • A diet that contains different types of salmon is a healthy diet that can help you improve many physical problems. Rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, salmon can reduce your risk of heart disease as well as low-density cholesterol. A steady diet of salmon has also been linked to a decrease in inflammatory diseases like arthritis and migraines. Salmon is often referred to as "brain food," because the Omega-3 acids found in salmon have been linked to brain development.

Identification

  • When purchasing any type of salmon, it's important to identify a good peice of salmon that preserves the natural taste. When purchasing whole salmon, avoid fishy-smelling salmon as it may not be fresh. The eyes should be clear and there should be no cuts or abrasions on the belly. When buying different cuts of salmon, avoid pieces with a fishy odor and discolored flesh. Purchase cuts that have firm flesh that isn't separated from the bone. If you purchase salmon that is pre-packaged, select one without a lot of liquid.

  • Photo Credit Rand and Syl
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