If you’re a fan of eating fish but need a little help when it comes to cooking it, ease your fishy fears with the answers to these frequently asked seafood questions!
How do I tell if seafood is fresh? Raw fish shouldn’t smell fishy, only like the sea. If buying a whole fish, the eyes should be clear. The skin and/or flesh should be bright, clean and not dry or sticky. White fish should appear almost translucent. Clams and other shellfish should be heavy, and if open, should snap closed when tapped on the counter. Discard any shellfish that haven’t opened after cooking.
How much fish should I purchase per person? Roughly 6-8 ounces per serving.
Can I store my fish before cooking it? If not cooking your seafood the day you purchase it, you can store it in portions in a zip-top bag with the air pushed out in your fridge with ice on top (being careful not to let the water touch the fish) for up to 3 days. Freezing should be a last resort.
How do I debone fish? Lay the fillet flat and run your fingers along the flesh to feel for the bones. Hold the pin bone between your thumb and forefinger, then gently pull the bone out with needle nose pliers or bone pullers while holding the flesh in place.
Should I cook seafood steaks and fillets differently? Seafood steaks work great for the grill, while fillets cook well in a pan or via poaching. On the grill or in a pan, cook on very high heat to avoid sticking, and avoid overcooking by checking it before you think it’s done.
How do I poach fish? Bring water, salt, a splash of vinegar and any extra flavor (bay leaf, lemon, etc.) to a simmer to infuse the liquid with flavor. Then turn the heat very low, add fish and cook for 5-8 minutes.
How do I prepare shrimp? Make sure to devein and deshell before eating. Cooking in the shell will create more flavor, or you can save the shells for making a stock. (The same concept applies to fish bones, but not pin bones.)
What flavors or sauces goes well with fish? Oilier fish benefit from more acidic sauces, whereas drier fish go well with sauce that has a higher fat content. A squeeze of citrus or melted (brown) butter are great ideas for almost any seafood.
How do I avoid making my house smell like fish? Cook it outside! ;) For a variety of great grilling recipes (and other sensational seafood how-to’s), search for your favorite fish on our recipe page.
If you have any other questions about fish and other seafood, feel free to ask one of our friendly and talented associates the next time you visit our seafood department!