Antigua Lionfish Cookoff

Exciting Chef’s Cookoff!

An exciting CHEF’S COOKOFF is part of the LIONFISH DERBY EVENT ON NOVEMBER 20th in the historic NELSONS DOCKYARD, a world heritage site. 4 of Antigua’s top chefs will be competing to take home the winning prizes.

Second Prize: $750 USD
Third Prize: $500 USD

The main goal is to acquaint Antiguans and visitors with the tasty lionfish and to encourage the consumption of lionfish. By doing this the organizers hope to create a bigger demand for lionfish stimulating the local fisherman to fish more for lionfish. In this way they hoping to reduce the negative effects of the lionfish invasion. This cooking competition will demonstrate the different ways of enjoying lionfish and hopefully inspire guests to prepare the fish themselves.

“The main reason we wish to include the CHEF’S COMPETITION in this contest is to demonstrate that lionfish are delicious,” says organizer Martha Watkins Gilkes “What better way to do that than to challenge local chefs to prepare this wonderful mild and buttery white fish in their own special style. We hope that this experience will encourage the chefs to offer lionfish at their restaurants and to cook it at home for their families.”

Lionfish are an invasive species in the Caribbean and they threaten both local fish stocks and reefs.

A single female lionfish can lay as many as 2 million eggs per year, so they’re multiplying rapidly in all areas they’ve invaded. They are also voracious predators that eat any fish or crustacean they can fit in their mouths. We must get them before they devour all of our fish, shrimp, lobsters and so other marine life.

Diners at local restaurants can make a positive environmental impact by ordering the fish as a cook-your-catch item or off the menu, helping to decrease lionfish populations. Lionfish is easily broiled, baked, sautéed, fried or prepared as ceviche or sushi.

It is a beautiful white meat. It is a great simple-tasting fish, and does not have a fishy flavor at all.