From catch to pan - preserving your catch
Preserving your catch until it hits your frying pan matters; it is the freshness of the fish that makes so much of a difference to the way it tastes!
Long hours of fishing, storing the fish onboard, and bringing it home to cook could be a complete waste of time, effort and money, if the fish brought home in poor condition. No one wants to buy fish or cook fish that were stored incorrectly. – the risk is tainted fish.
How should you store your catch? In order to be consumed or sold, the fish must have clear, bright eyes, solid flesh that bounces when touched and a clean fishy smell. Overly slimy fish and one that has an unpleasant fishy smell is a sure sign that decomposition is taking place.
To preserve your catch, you have to treat it in such a way that it remains clean and fresh until it consumed.
The steps you need to take are:
- Kill the fish with an Iki Stick or a sharp blow to the head that leaves them brain dead.
- Store it in an insulated bin with plenty of ice. Add some water to the bin too and let the dead fish sway in the slurry. You need to make sure that more ice is added at regular intervals to keep the temperature from rising.
- Remove the guts and throw the fish back into the bin or container of icy slurry.
- Transfer all the fish into a fresh bin with plenty of ice again when you reach home. Make sure there is ice in the stomach cavity of the fish.
- Cooking: Never thaw the fish completely or let it stand for hours before cooking. The best way is to pan-fry or bake or barbeque in tinfoil. Wrapping in tinfoil prevents the fish from becoming too dry.