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Thursday, July 24, 2014 12:01 am


 We can’t write a better intro than contained in the press release sent out by the good folks who put on the annual Redneck Fishing Tournament in Bath, so here goes: “For a lot of people, the assumption is Asian carp probably tastes a lot like the same letters – c, a, r, p – arranged in a slightly different order.” Au contraire, sayeth culinary wizards who aim to prove the Great Flying Fish of the Illinois River is, in fact, a delicacy. And so chefs aplenty, not to mention state economic development officials (this is, after all, an election year), will be on hand at the two-day tournament that begins Aug. 1. The first step is to rename the fish, so from here on out, it’s going to be Silverfin, with a capital “s.” Starting to taste better already, isn’t it? Chef Philippe Parola, who will be on hand to cook up carp, er Silverfin, using such exotic ingredients as olive oil, lemon pepper and white wine, has already declared the name change a success on his website that contains a marketing plan for, ahem, Silverfish. “Never underestimate the power of cooking!” Parola, who hails from Louisiana, declares on the Internet, where everything is true. Parola, who has cooked for such luminaries as Gerald Ford and George H.W. Bush – these were pre-Silverfin/carp days – says in the press release that eating carp/Silverfin is like eating crab meat. He did not say what kind of crabs. Stay tuned for the state fair, where rumor has it that deep-fried slugs on sticks will be the hot new item.

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