Cooking of Fish

In looking over articles on cooking of fish I found many different thing about cooking of fish. My way was to clean the fish, place it in a fry pan and cook it over a open fire until done. Looks like there is a bit more these days to cooking fish.

Thorough cooking of fish (to an internal temperature or 140?F- fish will flake when poked with a fork and has lost its translucent color) renders these parasites totally harmless. Other methods to do this include hard-salting fish (curing) or freezing for 24 hours.

Fish boards can be used in the cooking of fish to give the fish a smoky texture and flavor it just depends on the type of wood you decide to use. If you use a hickory board, the flavor will taste like a hickory smoked fish; if you use a cherry wood board the fish will taste like cherry. Before you use the board of your choice make sure you soak the wood in water for at least 12 hours before you use it.

The toxin found in food items will be killed by proper cooking of fish and waterfowl. When canning or smoking fish or waterfowl, methods should be used that incorporate sufficient heat to insure that any toxins will be killed off. Anglers and hunters should avoid harvesting any sick or dying fish or waterfowl, or those demonstrating unusual behavior, in areas where avian botulism has occurred. People should not handle dead birds or fish with bare hands. The use of gloves or an inverted plastic bag is recommended in order to avoid risks. If a diseased or dead bird is handled without gloves, hands should be thoroughly washed with hot soapy water or an anti-bacterial cleaner.

As I've written before (Panko Flounder anyone?), I didn't come easy to fish, but nowadays I try to eat it at least twice a week. Most often I buy flounder or scallops or clams or porgies from the fish stand or a bit of salmon from the grocer. In the cooking of fish, I've found it hard to branch out beyond the pan fry. However, last Friday I saw a headline in the most recent issue of Saveur magazine: Bluefish Wrapped in Bacon. Of course we all know bacon makes everything better so I decided that's what we'd have for dinner that night. I didn't read the recipe. I just knew bacon and bluefish would be involved and I'd take it from there.

Recipes included in this excerpt: Salmon Tartare; Grilled Trout with Fennel; Leek, Celery Root, and Oyster Broth; and Scallops with Chorizo. The formidable River Cottage team turns their attention to all matters aquatic in this definitive guide to freshwater fish, saltwater fish, and shellfish. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Nick Fisher examine the ecological and moral issues of fishing, teach individual skills such as catching and descaling, and offer a comprehensive (and fascinating) species reference section. They also demystify the cooking of fish with 135 recipes for preparing fish and shellfish in diverse ways, from pickling to frying to smoking.

Breading, standard procedure: The procedure for breading food that is to be fried is common: flour the item so that it is completely dry, dip it in egg, which clings to the flour, then dip it in bread crumbs, which stick to the egg. While the order and logic of standard breading procedure rarely varies, the details can vary greatly. The flour can be all-purpose, whole wheat, almond, or a pure starch such as cornstarch. The egg can be lightened with water or seasoned. The bread crumbs too can be seasoned; they can be soft bread crumbs or hard bread crumbs (see panko), or they can be substituted with another cereal or a ground nut. Given standard procedure, breading is open to the imagination.

Even a sprinkling of salt, as if you were simply seasoning the food, has curing effects. Meat can be dredged in salt and left to cure. As much as a cup of salt per gallon will make a good curing brine. For natural pickles, that is a pickle that creates its own acid through fermentation, a precise 50 grams of salt per liter of water is perfect (a little less than 2 ounces, about a quarter cup of Morton's kosher salt, per quart). Click below for many cooking fish recipes.

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