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Can you eat the Sea Urchins in the Virgin Islands?  

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ikory
(@ikory)
Advanced Member

I see urchins in sushi restarants a lot. I have seen Andrew Zimmern eat them many times on the travel channel. I do not know the species common in the Virgin Islands and only thing I have read so far is you can eat all species just some taste really bad. So are sea urchins a tasty treat or should I avoid them at all cost?

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Posted : June 28, 2013 3:28 am
OldTart
(@OldTart)
Expert

The edible species (it's actually the gonads of both males and females which are the edible part if that's not TMI and enough to turn you off) is found primarily in the cold waters of Europe. To the best of my knowledge the species found here isn't edible. Not poisonous as far as I know so if you want to give it a try do let us know!

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Posted : June 28, 2013 11:08 am
sheiba
(@sheiba)
Advanced Member

Sea urchins are an important part of the eco system in the waters. Please don't eat.

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Posted : June 28, 2013 11:59 am
OldTart
(@OldTart)
Expert

Sea urchins are an important part of the eco system in the waters. Please don't eat.

The fish we eat aren't?

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Posted : June 28, 2013 12:57 pm
STXBob
(@STXBob)
Trusted Member

Enjoy the fish species du jour while it lasts. As each one gets fished out, we move on to to next.

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Posted : June 28, 2013 1:08 pm
sheiba
(@sheiba)
Advanced Member

Sea urchins help maintain algae growth in the reef. The reef will smother in algae without the urchins.

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Posted : June 28, 2013 3:17 pm
Alana33
(@Alana33)
Expert

I have lived here forever and have never seen anyone, native or not, eating our local seas urchins.
Fish eyeballs and other interesting local delicacies, yes. Urchins, no!;)

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Posted : June 28, 2013 3:28 pm
ikory
(@ikory)
Advanced Member

Thank you everyone. This was very useful. I think I will give it a try and see. I am assuming the worse now, so perhaps I might be surprised.

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Posted : June 28, 2013 4:11 pm
OldTart
(@OldTart)
Expert

Thank you everyone. This was very useful. I think I will give it a try and see. I am assuming the worse now, so perhaps I might be surprised.

Based on easily accessible data (which you seem not to have explored at all), I caution against this plan. You appear to be one of these, "I'll do what I do whatever" dipshits. Oh, big sigh. But, seriously, don't come to my neck of the woods.

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Posted : June 28, 2013 6:09 pm
AandA2VI
(@AandA2VI)
Trusted Member

Wow that was a little harsh OT.

I would also do a little more research on how to prepare them if you do decide to eat them. Diadema antillarum is eaten on many islands in the Caribbean but since 1984 when 95% of them died off because of a pathogen, people consume MUCH less now.

*** The views and opinions expressed in my posts are soley those of A&A2VI and other like minded islanders. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the majority or any/all contributors to this site. Have a GREAT DAY!

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Posted : June 28, 2013 6:26 pm
dougtamjj
(@dougtamjj)
Expert

They are considered a delicacy in Barbados.

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Posted : June 28, 2013 6:44 pm
rotorhead
(@rotorhead)
Trusted Member

Before you start killing Sea Urchins go to a local sushi bar and try some Uni. They say that is an acquired taste but as much as I tried I could never acquire the taste. It is served gunkan style like roe. I like all of the roe but uni has a disgusting flavor. As OT pointed out, uni is the gonads of sea urchin and has the consistency and color of snot.

In the West Indies, slate pencil urchins are eaten.
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slate_pencil_urchin_(Atlantic)

---------------------------------------------------------------------------
They say there's a heaven for those who will wait
Some say it's better but I say it ain't
I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints
the sinners are much more fun...
You know that only the good die young.
BJ

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Posted : June 28, 2013 7:40 pm
Alana33
(@Alana33)
Expert

Now I know why we don't eat them. ugh!
BTW - You'd probably have to eat a lot to make a meal out of them which will probably entail getting sea urchin spines in your fingers.
Be prepared to pee on your hand, if that is the case.

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Posted : June 28, 2013 7:45 pm
rotorhead
(@rotorhead)
Trusted Member

Uni is frequently served with a quail egg on top. Although this helps mask the flavor of the uni, it is still disgusting. Ikura with a quail egg is delicious, however we do not have salmon here in the Caribbean.


Here you have both Uni and Ikura with quail egg. They say the good uni has the consistency of firm custard but in my experience it is slimier than that. Maybe they save the good stuff for Japan.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------
They say there's a heaven for those who will wait
Some say it's better but I say it ain't
I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints
the sinners are much more fun...
You know that only the good die young.
BJ

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Posted : June 28, 2013 8:25 pm
ikory
(@ikory)
Advanced Member

AandA2VI, Thank you :). That is very interesting, I assume they have made a come back.

OT I will get your approval for all my meals for now on to match social norms *-). Nobody has said they are not edible, just they might taste disgusting.

Dougtamji, yeah I just looked it up it is a delicacy in Barbados. Apparently 17 different species on the island.

Alana, Yeah I do not want to get hurt either. If I have the right kind of glove and tool I will give one a try. Just one.

Rotor, Picture looks tasty, thank you for the info. I have tried UNI it was masked with so many other things so I have no idea what it true taste is. Probably why sushi places mask the true flavor is because it taste really gross. I greatly enjoy raw oysters, clams, and many fish. When I was in Japan I greatly enjoyed this fish head dish.

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Posted : June 28, 2013 9:27 pm
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