Shad Season Starts — Despite the miserable climate change — the Ice Age was climate change after all– in southeastern Pennsylvania, an absolutely wondrous season has started.
It is shad time.
The fish, also known as the river herring as it is part of the herring family, is now being sold at fish mongers and supermarkets throughout the region as their harvest has begun down south. The spawning starts when the temperature hits 51 degrees F.
Pennsylvania has an historic connection to the fish, which is sometimes credited for saving the American Revolution. It is said that they fed the Continental Army at its most desperate time as the spawning on the Schuylkill in the spring of 1778 occurred just about the time the army had run out of food at Valley Forge.
The illustration above is Shad Fishing at Gloucester on the Delaware River by the great Thomas Eakins painted in 1881.
Yes, it is delicious. Keep an eye on these pages. Maybe Chef Bill Sr. will explain how to cook it.