Author: Jean Morrison
Choosing and storing fish
Fish provides excellent low fat protein and freshly caught fish is one of the most delicious foods you can cook. Plus, fish is much more digestible than meat.
Most fish is available all year but there are times when their flavour, colour and texture are not at their best. Consequently, ask your fishmongers what they recommend.
Fresh fish should be firm and should spring back when touched. The fish should smell of the water from whence it came. If it smells fishy then don't buy it. Fish can suffer from freezer burn so, if the fish is stored on ice, look for dried out edges or brown patches. If you find them then don't buy. If buying fresh fish then cook it within 24 hours. If you can't buy fresh fish then frozen fish is the second best option.
Always check for freezer burn - you don't want dried or brown edges to your fillets. Defrost frozen fish in the fridge overnight.
Buying whole fish is often the most economical way to buy fish. Look for clear, prominent eyes and a firm body with the scales still firmly attached. If the tail is curled the fish may not be fresh. If the fish monger will fillet the fish for you then that could be a time-saving advantage. Be sure to ask for the bones as they can be made into fish stock.
When buying fish take it home quickly. It can deteriorate fast. Fish should always be stored for a minimum of time in the coldest part of the refrigerator. Keep it in a plastic bag so it doesn't taint other foods. Never re-freeze defrosted fish.
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