For fishermen, there’s nothing better than cooking up the catch of the day right there on the boat for some good, fresh eating. Luckily, most of us regular folk only need to make a trip to the local fish market for some great seafood. Although you might have the most perfect selection available to you, correct preparation is the only thing that will transform those raw ingredients into a delicious and succulent seafood feast. The following are some pointers on how to properly prep and cook the most popular type of seafood: fish.
Fantastic Fried Fish
Fish and chips is a traditional dish that is a favorite of many, but cooking fried fish takes a lot more than just tossing some filets into a deep fryer. In order to get the flaky, golden-brown crust you want, you need to master the proper techniques to get the perfect results.
Use the appropriate cooking oil
For deep frying, you need to choose an oil that has a high smoke point. These include canola, peanut, safflower, olive, sunflower, and a few others. Don’t use oils with low smoke points because they will become unusable very quickly with high heat.
Check with a thermometer
Frying the fish at the right temperature is essential to getting the best results, and the only sure way to tell is by using a thermometer. A general standard temperature is 360 degrees Fahrenheit for fish frying.
One or two at a time
Do not put too many filets into a single pan or fryer since the batter will stick together. Space the chunks out so that none are touching on any side.
Let the oil run off
If you like crispy fish, make sure to drain the oil after cooking. Don’t let the fish sit in the runoff for long because it will absorb it and become very soggy and greasy. It’s best to let the fish cool off and dry on a metal rack.
Gorgeous Grilled Fish
Grilling is usually reserved for meaty fish like salmon, tuna, swordfish, or larger whole fish. This preparation method is among the most healthy and produces an end product that is both flavorful and lean. The following are some basics of grilling fish.
Preheat the grill
For most traditional barbecue grills, preheat for about half an hour. Next, spread out the coals evenly so they are laid out in a single layer. Finally, shift the height of the grill to about 5 inches above the coals. Moderate heat is recommended for cooking fish.
Oil the cooking grid
It is necessary to keep the grid well oiled so that the fish doesn’t stick to it. Without proper lubrication, the fish will flake off when you try to flip or remove it from the grill.
Marinate the fish
Keeping the fish moist throughout the whole process is very important as well. Grilling has a tendency to dry out meat fairly quickly. To combat the heat and flavor the fish simultaneously, marinate the fish an hour beforehand. Baste the fish liberally whenever it appears to get dry.
Determine the appropriate cooking time based on size
Since fish are of all different shapes and sizes, you can estimate the cooking time by following a simple rule. From the thickest part of the fish, cook for 10 minutes for each inch of thickness.
Holly is a chef at Flying Fish Restaurant in Sydney, Australia. Holly knows that cooking seafood can be a little daunting at first, and that a few simple tips can go a long way. Holly is currently working on her first seafood cook book, including a section on seafood cooking tips. For more information of Flying Fish Restaurant visit: www.flyingfish.com.au