Fermented Fish Heads are Delicious to Many Alaskans
Stinkheads are a traditional Alaskan food that are made by fermenting fish heads in a specialized way. The fish used to make stinkheads are typically salmon, although other fish species can also be used. The heads are removed from the fish and buried in the ground for several weeks, sometimes up to a few months. The fish heads undergo a process of fermentation. During the fermentation process, bacteria break down the fish heads and produce acids and other compounds that give stinkheads their distinctive flavor and smell. When the heads are dug up, they are cleaned and the flesh is separated from the bones. The flesh is then consumed, often raw or lightly cooked, with the skin and bones discarded. Stinkheads are a good source of protein, healthy fats, and various micronutrients such as vitamin D and selenium, which are important for bone health and immune function. However, due to their strong odor and potential bacterial contamination, they should be consumed with caution and in moderation.