They were preparing for the fishing process known as ‘kannizzati’.
Lampuki (dorado / mahi mahi) season is right around the corner, and fishermen all over the islands are gearing up for one of the busiest times of the year.
A photographer by the name of Jurgen Rekkers headed down to Marsaxlokk – one of Malta’s best-known fishing villages – to capture the local fisherman getting ready for next month’s catch.
He captured them surrounded by huge palm tree fronds: an essential tool to catching lampuki in Malta.
“Fishermen cut and gather the larger, lower fronds from palm trees which they then weave into large flat rafts. The rafts are pulled out to sea, usually with the small traditional fishing boats known as ‘luzzu’ but can also be pulled out to sea by using larger modern fishing boats,” the photographer explained.
“Around midday, lampuki school underneath the rafts, seeking the shade. The fishermen first stay five to ten metres away from the raft and repeatedly go around the raft pulling a silicone squid jig behind them until they catch something,” he continued.
“They then leave the lampuka hanging off the side of the boat until other fish come and school next to it; then a mesh net is thrown over the schooling fish,” the curious photographer concluded.
This fishing method, known as kannizzati, has been in use for thousands of years.
This fish is very commonly eaten in Malta during the last weeks of summer and the first weeks of autumn, with Maltese families cooking it in a variety of ways.
What’s your favourite way to cook lampuki?
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