Swai is the name for a South Asian freshwater catfish native to countries including Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand and Laos. It is sometimes referred to as Sutchi catfish, basa, tra, or pangasius. It is both farmed and freshwater caught on those countries.
Swai is a white-fleshed fish with a flaky texture and a somewhat sweet taste-much like American catfish. But swai is much less expensive than other types of seafood and is a wonderful alternative to more expensive fish.
In the past, some companies have tried to get around the tariffs imposed on imported fish by importing swai under the names such as catfish, grouper or sole. The FDA has fined these companies extensively, so most companies today import swai under the names basa and/or swai. Most consumers consider the Asian and American breeds to have similar textures and flavor.
Many of the most popular restaurants in the United States utilize swai on their everyday menu. Its versatility allows chefs to fry it, grill it, bake it and much more. If you are seeking an easy fish taco night for the family, consider giving swai a try.
Don't forget to check out the recipe for Baked Swai with White Wine Garlic Sauce!
Buy your Swai Fillets here.