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Where can I buy Icelandic fish jerky?
September 6, 2007 10:40 AM   Subscribe

Where can I buy Icelandic dried fish jerky (Harðfiskur) in the US or Canada? And, if I like fish jerky, what other yummy but unusual preserved foods should I try?

A friend recently brought back a package of fish jerky from Iceland. It was really tasty, and I would like to see about buying some more. The only place I could find selling it online via Google was in Iceland; I'd just as soon avoid paying international shipping and maybe import duty for something so trivial, so I was hoping someone would know of a store or internet retailer in the US or Canada that imports and sells harðfiskur.

And I would welcome suggestions for other unusual but yummy dried or preserved foods that would be fun to try. (For "unusual," read: "unlikely to be found in a large US grocery store with a decent international section.") Flavorful is good, but nothing so pungent as to be room-clearing, please. I'm open to trying anything as long as it can be ordered online or on the phone (so your grandmother's homemade sausage in Slovakia may be the most awesome food ever, but if she isn't selling it in the US, telling me about it doesn't help very much). I visit friends in Canada several times a year, so Canadian-based suggestions are most welcome.
posted by Forktine to Food & Drink (12 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Try an Asian grocery. The one in my town has preserved bizarre foods galore. I had some dried squid recently that was quite good.
posted by melissam at 11:01 AM on September 6, 2007

Its not Icelandic, but try the grocery section in Ikea. They have all the weird Swedish fish products.
posted by heh3d at 11:26 AM on September 6, 2007

I've found dried squid and dried cuttlefish in Korean supermarkets and Russian grocery stores, and it's always a tasty treat.
posted by Faint of Butt at 11:28 AM on September 6, 2007

Where do you live? Perhaps people could provide answers that would be near you physically. Frex, I don't know of any place online off the top of my head, but I know that Mitsuwa might have something interesting for you if you were in one of the right areas.

Oh, and clam jerky. It's... an experience...
posted by jammer at 11:35 AM on September 6, 2007

With salt fish & hard bread you'll be able to make the classic Newfoundland recipe fish & brewis.
posted by misteraitch at 11:42 AM on September 6, 2007

Salmon jerky is absolutely delicious. I stock up on it every time I'm in Seattle or Portland. I'd recommend trying to find some of that, which is probably a lot cheaper to get shipped to you than anything from Iceland.

Outside of that, I'd say that people are right- find a Russian or Asian market and you can probably get tons of preserved goods.
posted by atomly at 12:40 PM on September 6, 2007

If you can find a nigerian or african grocer, get them to make you some Fusa, which is absolutely delish! It's razor thin layers of raw beef dipped in chili sauce and then dried.
posted by parmanparman at 12:52 PM on September 6, 2007

posted by Dr.Pill at 4:14 PM on September 6, 2007

I will check out Ikea and some large Asian-specialty stores next time I am on the I-5 corridor.

I really appreciate the biltong and fusa suggestions, and will try to track them down. I think I had some dried cuttlefish once, and loved it -- thanks for the reminder.
posted by Forktine at 4:23 PM on September 6, 2007

Forktine, I learned to love dried fish (and squid) with beer in Russia. There are many different varieties -- get thee to a Russian grocery, and find some different kinds of dried squid and dried fish.

I have personally eaten (and still crave) lots of BEERka brand stuff, as on that page, and it was all decent to good. I didn't like the dried shrimp, though YMMV.
posted by fake at 4:26 PM on September 6, 2007

Bacala is a dried salt cod that any seafood market could probably special order.
posted by BrotherCaine at 1:22 AM on September 7, 2007

I'm seconding biltong, and also recommending mojama, and hakarl, although the latter is somewhat room clearing.
posted by roofus at 3:47 AM on September 7, 2007

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