Species Focus: John Dory
In case you are wondering why we started with John Dory, the answer is: why not!
I have not personally even eaten John Dory (also known as St. Peter's Fish) which is one of those "exotic" fish that people inquire as to whether or not it is kosher because it seems exciting. It comes from Australia, which means two things to most kosher consumers:
1. It is going to be expensive
2. It is likely to be skinned
For those of you not excluded because of #1, #2 is going to be an issue. The first rule in kosher fish is that it must either have skin on (so that you can check for kaskeses yourself) or have hashgacha.
Yes, from what we have seen John Dory (Zeus Faber) appears to be kosher. Its scales seems to be small and smoewhat embedded (referred to as scutes), though they are still kosher if they can be removed without ripping skin. Someone who has tried it themselves should kindly reply to this post and tell us about it.
Just to mention, talk about John Dory feeding on non-kosher species should not discourage you from buying it (for those familiar with the prohibition of eating something whose entire plumpness is derived from forbidden foods). We noted that it feeds on kosher species as well.
There was one place that had interesting recipes that looked possible for us non-professional type's, but it is likely to fit in any recipe for tilapia. For what is is worth, Fishbase.com notes that it can be, "steamed, fried, broiled, microwaved, and baked".
If you buy it whole, note that yield is rather low (about 30-35% of the whole fish can turn into edible dinner). For more details on the texture, taste, and nutritional values for John Dory, click here.