A name used for any of several smaller species of shark, although the reference isn't confined to one species. Dogfish genera include Squalus acanthias (known as spur dog), Masterias (smooth hound), Mustelus canis (sand shark) and Scyliorhinus stellaris (nursehound). The name refers to the small size and shape of the fish, the offspring of some of which are even referred to as "pups." Dogfish, which are found in the North and South Pacific, both sides of the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean, have generally been considered trash fish in the United States. That concept is gradually changing, however, and this moderately lean fish is gaining favor. The firm, fairly strong flavored flesh lends itself to full-flavored sauces. Dogfish is best baked or fried and is, in fact, the fish widely used in Great Britain for fish and chips. See also fish.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.