The herring is a small, oily and highly nutritious sea fish with silvery sides and a metallic blue back. It is especially prolific in the North Atlantic and the Baltic, while a related species, the California Herring, is abundant in the North
Herring is obtainable throughout the year but is considered to be at its best from June to December.
An economical fish, herring may be prepared in a variety of ways. Fresh herring is perhaps best fried or grilled , but it may also be poached, stewed, stuffed, baked or made into pies. Preserved herring, such as red herring, bloaters, kippers, salt herring, rollmops and Bismarck herring, are also popular. Herring roes have a pleasant subtle flavour and make an excellent savoury on toast.
To prepare herring for cooking, remove the head and entrails and any black skin. The scales should be scraped off and the fins and tail trimmed.
Many people do not enjoy eating her-ring because of its many small bones.
However, most of these bones may be removed by neatly splitting the fish in half. Flatten the fish, then, using a knife, the backbone may be carefully removed with as many of the small bones as possible.