words Al Woods
Possibilities are endless inside a kitchen. There is so much to cook, so many seasonings to use, and dozens of ways for preparing a dish, that the finish line seems to disappear when learning about cooking. With such vast knowledge to acquire, it is natural to hesitate at the time of preparing certain dishes.
After all, one may be an expert in cooking red meat but fail with pasta. Fish and seafood are not out of this list either. Truth is, there is a lot to take into account when working with these types of food. Here we’ll reveal some secrets to working with fish and seafood as you should.
Use The Right Knives
If you go to a mechanic’s garage, you’ll see hundreds of tools. Each one serves a unique purpose, even if they look similar. The kitchen is not too different from an auto repair shop. In the kitchen, one needs the exact tool for the exact food.
If you are working with seafood, you cannot use any standard knife. You need the proper ones: fileting knives to cut wafer-thin slices, a Deba to cut through fish bones, an oyster and clam knife, and a Yanagida for sushi. Oh, and don’t forget to count on a fish spatula and a fish scaler as well.
Keep Food Cool and Fresh
Certain groceries stand the test of time. They may be left out for weeks, even months, and not show any sign of being spoiled or rotten. Unfortunately, seafood is not part of this group.
Seafood must be kept frozen at least at -18°C or below. This way, you prevent bacteria from developing, thus, expanding the shelf life of the food. However, not every type of fish last the same amount of time. Ask and answer yourself questions all the time: How low does the freezer’s temperature need to be to maintain the trout fresh? Also, how long does smoked salmon last while stored in the freezer? Will gathering different types of fish together affect each other? And so on.
The more research you do, the better. Each fish is unique, so you better be prepared beforehand.
A common mistake almost every chef makes when cooking fish. The only raw fish that you should eat is sushi, but please avoid reaching the other extreme as well. Cooking experts don’t want to take the fish out too early. However, in doing this, many end up crossing the line and taking it out too late.
An overcooked fish is dried and tasteless; a must-prevent for any seafood lover. Now, we are clarifying this because it is common for fish to keep on cooking itself even after it has been removed from the heater. Keep your eye out, although it is safe to mention that trial and error may be your best teacher.
Although these tips are highly effective, we want to remind you that the kitchen is not an easy place to work in. In other words, don’t be afraid of failure. Try and fail as much as you can. Burn a dish, spoil another one, and the third one will be a masterpiece. Trust in yourself, embrace new experiences, and always enjoy the process.