Fishing for a duck


What’s this?

Blue and orange are complementary colours (meaning that when combined, they cancel each other out, or, according to me, they look really good together) and here they are colouring a mound of fishing nets and buoys on the beach with a bit of yellow.

Fish is very prominent in Goan cuisine. One particular type of fish that’s caught off the coast here and in other parts of India is the Bombay Duck. Just to be clear about that, the Bombay Duck is a rather unattractive fish, and is definitely not a duck! Why is a fish called a Bombay Duck? I didn’t know but I found a possible explanation on the internet: the construction of railways in India (by the British, using Indian labour) began in the 1850s.  The fish-loving people of Bengal (on the east coast of India) became aware of a delicious and highly prized fish caught off the west coast, and so began to transport it to Bengal by rail.  Apparently this particular fish, when dried, is extremely smelly, and so it was carried by the mail train, called the Bombay Mail, or the Bombay daak (mail).  The word daak was eventually corrupted by English speakers into ‘duck’.  It’s a round-about story, and not proven to be true, but I like it!

Has anyone eaten Bombay Duck?  Is it good?  As you know from my last post, I’m shakahari (vegetarian) so I’ll need to rely on what you say!  

Where’s this?

Palolem Beach, Goa, a teeny tiny little state with a big reputation on the west coast of India


2 thoughts on “Fishing for a duck

  1. Actually, I’m not there yet but I will go in February. I will go to Mumbai first for business, then see a friend in Rajasthan and hopefully then Madhya Pradesh – I haven’t been there yet! I can’t wait!


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