Different cuts of meats are suited to specific cooking methods and the same can be said for fish. For instance, some fish, such as Tuna or Swordfish can be cut and grilled like steak. However, you wouldn’t get the same result with Kingklip, because they’re not as muscular and would flake apart too easily.
When preparing fish it’s important to know a few basics because you don’t want to ruin a perfectly good piece of fresh fish with an inappropriate cooking method.
In particular, Hake or calamari are ideal varieties to batter and many fish and chip shops choose these species because they’re more affordable and sustainable to buy in bulk, and of course because people love them.
To make your own batter, you simply need to whisk together:
- 1 cup of flour
- ¼ cup of cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon of baking powder
- Soda water – until the consistency is that of pancake batter
Different Cooking Methods
For some species, particularly the fattier kinds like Mackerel, Trout and Salmon, smoking them can enhance their subtle flavours. You simply require a grid and a braai with a lid to cover your fish.
By following these instructions, you’ll be on your way to smoking fish in no time:
- Once your fire is going, season your fish – you can use salt, pepper, lime, lemon juice, garlic or any other herbs you prefer
- Burn down to medium coals and place your fish, skin side down on top
- Throw robust herbs, such as rosemary, onto the fire
- Cover the fish and let it smoke for five minutes
Baking is also a good cooking method for fish because it cooks the fish very slowly, using its own juices and added herbs for flavour. Best of all, you can bake almost any fish whole or portioned, with excellent results. Ask your fishmonger to butterfly a whole Yellowtail, the simply stuff it with herbs and garlic, wrap it in tin foil and bake it for an hour.
If you’re using white fish, take note that it tends to dry out a lot quicker than oily fish, so you should keep a closer eye on it.
An even safer route to take with baking fish is to cover your dish in tin foil and lock in the juices. Although it’s still possible to overcook it using this method, it won’t have a dry outer layer, should you forget about it.
At Capsicum Culinary Studio we know and live by the idea of creativity fuelling good, tasty foods using fresh-from-the-sea ingredients.
Do your imagination a favour by contacting your nearest culinary campus to enquire about our cooking courses and programmes. Alternatively, follow our social media channels to share your ideas and feel inspired.