Sea Cucumber Season
Inside the processing plant at Alaska Glacier Seafood (AGS), plant manager Nick Segel held out a slimy, gelatinous sea creature about the size and shape of a pickle. The cylindrical bottom-dweller has little bumps — like nascent horns — running up and down its body.
Brown and alien-like, it’s not exactly appetizing. But despite appearances, Segal says sea cucumbers are delicious, especially the skin.
“It actually tastes really good, kind of like a mild mushroom,” he said. “It goes well in a lot of soups and stews, stuff like that.”
You won’t find sea cucumbers on many Alaska dinner tables, but this time of year, the animal is a boon for fishermen and processors. Prices for their skins will sell for between $20 and $30 per pound this season, Segel said, making it one of AGS’ most expensive products on a per pound basis.