Restaurants in Kalamazoo have put seafood in the spotlight for Lent. Here are some of the best places to get it and save a few bucks?

Of course, when we think seafood, Red Lobster is usually on the top of the list. But what about the more locally owned restaurants? Some concepts are promoting seafood that customers can take advantage of throughout the 40-day Lenten period, while others are promoting seasonal menus with additional fish and shellfish items.

Aquinas thought fellow Catholics should abstain from eating land-locked animals because they were too darn tasty. Lent was a time for simplicity, and he suggested that everyone tone it down. It makes sense. In the 1200s, meat was a luxury. Eating something as decadent as beef was no way to celebrate a holiday centered on modesty.

Yelp has listed the best fish fries in Kalamazoo with Hop Cat topping the list.

I would suggest some of our restaurants listed on our Seize the Deal page, where you can save some money. Places like Cafe Meli or even Finley's Grill & Smokehouse. Then you can celebrate with us on May 20th at Kalamazoo on Tap.

Finally, here are some ideas from Gordon Food Service you can try at home.

Seafood cakes. Similar to crab cakes in appearance, breaded shrimp, salmon and cod cakes feature favorite seafood flavors that can be customized with spicy seasonings or roasted vegetables.

Cod bites. Similar to popcorn shrimp in appearance, these can be served as a small plate or a sharing plate to satisfy the growing appetite for cod.

Ethnic presentations. Flavors from Latin America, Asia and the Mediterranean—places where fish are a main part of the diet—add on-trend variety to many styles of fish.

Signature sauces and sides. Tartar sauce is traditional, but turn up the heat by adding spicy relish or crafting your own sriracha, gochujang or raspberry chipotle sauce. As for side, Technomic recommends coleslaw as a trending favorite to accompany shellfish.

Go flavor-forward. The leading flavors for fish and shellfish are lemon, butter, garlic and tomato, Technomic reports. Upward trending flavors for fish dishes include mustard, miso and butter. For seafood, it’s bacon, spices, and onion.

What are you giving up for Lent? Tell us in the comments.

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