Cooking Fish

 

  • A general rule for baking or broiling fish is 10 minutes per inch of thickness at 400-450° F, turning the fish halfway through the cooking time. This rule does not apply to microwave cooking or frying.
  • Fish less than 1/2″ thick do not have to be turned.
  • If fish is cooked in a sauce or foil, add 5 additional minutes to the cooking time.
  • The cooking time for frozen fish should be doubled.
  • Seafood with low fat content – like grouper, flounder and tilapia – should be basted when cooking with a dry heat method such as broiling and baking.
  • Fish is done when the flesh becomes opaque and flakes easily at the thickest part.
  • Most fish will continue cooking for 1 to 2 minutes after being removed from the heat, so plan for this in the cooking time.

Broiling

  • Place fish, one-inch thick or less, 2-4″ from the source of heat.
  • Fish thicker than 1″ should be placed 5 to 6 inches away from the heat.
  • Seafood with low fat content – like grouper, flounder and tilapia – should be basted when cooking with a dry heat method such as broiling and baking.

Frying

  • Frying Pan-fry or sauté:
  • Lightly dust with flour.
  • Fry fillets in 1/8-inch of oil for 3 to 6 minutes per side or until golden and fish flakes easily.
  • Thickness of fillets will determine the cooking time.

Deep fry:

  • Place fish in single layer in deep kettle or saucepan and cook in enough fat to cover and permit fish to move freely; do not crowd.
  • Generally the temperature of the oil should be 365° F.
  • Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown.
  • When cooking multiple batches, always allow the temperature of the oil to return to 365° F before adding more fish.

Grilling

  • Preheat gas or electric grill. Start the fire about 30 minutes before cooking when using a charcoal grill.
  • Fish is best grilled over a moderately hot fire and on a surface that has been well oiled.
  • When coals are white-hot, spread out in a single layer. Adjust the grill height to 4″ to 6″ above the heat.
  • Use indirect heat for a whole fish.
  • Firm-textured fish – like grouper, shark, swordfish and amberjack – grill well.
  • When cooking kebabs put foods with the same cooking time together, as seafood cooks quickly.

Marinating Seafood

  • Always marinate seafood in the refrigerator.
  • Always discard marinade that contains raw juices from product which may harbor bacteria.
  • When marinade is needed for basting set aside a portion of the marinade before adding raw seafood.