new zealand monkfish

new zealand wild-caught monkfish

SPECIES: Kathetostoma Giganteum

COMMON NAMES:  Monk Fish, Stargazer,  Māori Name: Pūwhara

monkfish fillet 2.jpg



> Headed/Gutted
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TASTE, TEXTURE AND PREPARATION: The Monkfish has characteristics similar to rock lobster, and is ideal marinated. Suited to most cooking methods, but particularly for recipes requiring a meaty, thick flesh. Succulent, pearly white, firm flesh with a low oil content, not readily flaked. It is suited to baking, BBQ, poaching, steaming, use in a soup/chowder, or frying.

Controlled by the New Zealand Quota Management System to ensure sustainability.


about new zealand monkfish

Also known as a 'Stargazer', after it’s distinctive upward pointing eyes. Monkfish has a mottled olive green/brown body above and white below, with an elongated and flattened body. Monkfish is widespread in New Zealand coastal waters, where they can be found at depths of 50-500 metres. They are most plentiful around the South Island and on the Chatham Rise. Monkfish/stargazer have an annual reproductive cycle with a winter spawning season. They bury themselves in soft sediment and prey on passing fish.


Commercial catch levels have fluctuated around 2,000 - 4,200 tonnes since the late 1980s. The abundance of monkfish/ stargazer around the South Island, as monitored by catch rates and trawl surveys, has been broadly stable over the last two decades.