How to tell if fish is fresh
Fish goes off easily, so it must always be prepared and served as fresh as possible. Ask your fishmonger when the fish was caught. If you are making sushi, for example, freshness is a necessity. You will recognise fresh fish by its bright red gills, fresh smell and bright eyes. The mucus layer on fresh fish is even, and the flesh feels firm. One serving of fish is:
- Fresh, uncleaned fish 200 g/person
- Fish fillets 100–150 g/person
Fish is sensitive to other scents and tastes, so you should pack it tightly in storage.
Juicy fish stew
You can prepare fish in many ways, including stewing, cooking and frying. In the summer, you can also cook fish on the grill, on an open fire in the forest or even in a smoker box. The cooking time depends on the thickness of the fillet, but is generally short. Stewing fish under tinfoil or steaming fish in a liquid on the hob or in the oven makes it tasty and juicy. When steaming fish, the cooking time is half as long again as when cooking fish in a liquid. The meat of fully cooked fish is light and opaque. Cooking times for stewing:
- Small fish (250 g) 10–12 minutes
- Fish fillets 8–10 minutes
- Medium-sized fish (700 g–1 kg) 15–20 minutes
- Large, plump fish (1 kg) 25–30 minutes
For larger fish, allow an extra five minutes of cooking time for each additional kilo. A one-kilo fish cooks in around 45 minutes in tinfoil at 200 °C in the oven. Small fish can be fried quickly in a pan. Batter gives additional taste and crispness, but will not work with greasy fish. Butter lends a pleasant, genuine taste to cooked fish.
Soulful smoky taste
Frying on the coals and grilling make greasy fish taste great. Before cooking, clean and season the fish and oil its surface. If you are using a gridiron, oil it and wait until the coals are glowing properly. Large fish need around 20–30 minutes to cook, and smaller fish need 10–15 minutes. The smoky taste goes particularly well with greasy fish. When smoking fish, you can choose from a wide selection of options, with smoker boxes and bags being the easiest. You must prepare and salt the fish before smoking it. The smoking time depends on the size of the fish, the temperature and the method of smoking. Fish weighing approximately one kilo need around 30 minutes to cook. Smaller fish need around 15 minutes.