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Old 02-13-2008, 01:47 PM   #1
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How to bake a fish brown and yet not cause it to be dry

how do you bake a fish in the oven till light brown and yet not cause it to lose its moisture?

have tried pan frying it first till slightly brown and then baking it however its still dry after finish

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Old 02-13-2008, 01:49 PM   #2
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Are you breading it?

The key to moist fish is to not overcook it. It needs to be cooked just until done and not a second more.
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Old 02-13-2008, 02:16 PM   #3
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cookee, top it with a compound butter (basil dill is my fave) and bake at fairly high temp, around 400 or higher.

if you have a good broiler, pop it under there instead of the oven.
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Old 02-13-2008, 02:27 PM   #4
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What kind of fish are you using? If it's too thin (i.e., tilapia, flounder), baking won't brown it - it will always finish cooking before it browns. I would just pan-fry these for a few minutes on each side.

If it's a thicker piece of fish - like salmon, tuna, swordfish, etc. - it can be broiled till browned, especially if it has a breadcrumb crust. Cook's Illustrated has a free recipe online for broiled salmon: Sophisticated Salmon for Two

HTH.
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Old 02-13-2008, 02:30 PM   #5
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good point gg.

thin filets won't brown that well. they're best breaded and baked/fried, or just plainly pan fried. you could put them under a broiler, but they'd have to be on the closest position to the flame.
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Old 02-13-2008, 02:34 PM   #6
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Maybe all you need to do is pan fry it with no time in the oven. Always start with your presentation side down. You can see it cook from the bottom up. Once it's almost half way cooked up turn over and do the same thing. Tent with a piece of foil and it will finish cooking. Very few times do I have to actually finish a piece of fish in the oven. If I am baking a fish I do it from start to finish and don't really expect it to be browned like you get from a skillet.
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Old 02-13-2008, 07:58 PM   #7
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You need the appropriate fish for the appropriate cooking method. I grew up on pan fish and it is still my preferred method, but I can't wait until summer try a recipe given me here that calls for it wrapped in horseradish leaves...
Thin fillets for pan frying, thicker ones can be baked. Some with butter and herbs and some drizzled with EVOO and herbs, maybe some zest.
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Old 02-13-2008, 08:35 PM   #8
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The best thing you can do is pan sear it on a very high heat. Get your pan very hot, then add your fat (butter, olive oil, vegetable oil), as soon as the fat is hot (mere seconds), add you fish. It will instantly be browned and crisped, sealing in the juices. At that point, you can finish it in the oven, which has already been preheated. Depending on the size of your fish, it could befinished in 5 minutes to 15 minutes.
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Old 02-14-2008, 04:54 AM   #9
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fishy

hi all thanks.

i have tried salmon and pollock. I too read in a cook book somewhere that pan frying it to seal the juices and popping in the oven will keep the moist in. However still no success.. Maybe i lack butter like some of you guys mentioned here? I put in the oven clean with no butter.

or maybe the cuts i use are too thin. Will try again soon!


i also tried coating the pollock with rice flour and some bread crumbs and small squid fine chopped pieces and deep frying it...really good fish.
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Old 02-14-2008, 11:53 AM   #10
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Searing does not seal in juices-- that's a kitchen myth -- but still is a good method of cooking fish and other proteins.
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