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Old 02-23-2007, 12:03 AM   #1
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Need help with fish

O.K. well I just started a cook job p/t at the local bar. So Lent is here and they are doing a fish fry every Friday. Well the main cook there orders frozen cod fillets and thaws them in water on Thursday and leaves them in water till Friday in the walk in. She then told me just to pick a piece out of the water butterfly it and coat it with 50/50 flour & breadcrumbs then into the fryer. Now where are the seasonings? The fish is waterlogged and falling apart and everyone is blaming me(the new guy).
The Owner doesn't know anything in the kitchen and doesn't want any batter of any kind. So what would be a proper way to thaw the fish and season it before hitting the oil? Help

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Old 02-23-2007, 12:10 AM   #2
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Get another job. Seriously, though, you are probably fighting a losing battle. I'm aghast. This so wrong on so may levels.

VERA...hurry up and come back from New Orleans. We need your expertise.
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:25 AM   #3
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Yeah, it sucks but I have to work there for now. My wife has bartended there for a long time and everyone loves the both of us. The former cook just up and quit. They asked me one night if I would work 2 nights a week (Cash)
I haven't cooked in a restaurant in 10 years...
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Old 02-23-2007, 01:01 AM   #4
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I'm sorry to hear that you're kind of stuck between a rock and hard place but, at least, you can work with your wife. That's a real positive thing. And, of course, the cash thing is a real incentive. Be careful with that, too. It could come back and bite you in the butt.

As far as the fish issue is concerned, I don't think it should be "swimming" (sorry for the comment) in water all night. That is probably what contributes to its falling apart when it is cooked. I've never had to prepare fish in the quantity you probably have to, nor in the time frame. However, there are plenty of other folks on this board who will be able to give you expert advice. Just be patient. The answers will come.
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Old 02-23-2007, 01:10 AM   #5
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Thank you... Yeah I'm just helping them out. I have a full time job. But now that I'm there I know that what they are doing is wrong and I want it to be right...lol
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Old 02-23-2007, 07:36 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flgshp99
Thank you... Yeah I'm just helping them out. I have a full time job. But now that I'm there I know that what they are doing is wrong and I want it to be right...lol
They're doing everything wrong. Thaw the fish in the cooler [fridge] overnight. If you thaw it in water make sure it drains well, you can pat it dry with paper towelling.
1/2 and 1/2 breadcrumb and flour, wow! that's different, never tried that. How about crumbed? make a batter with the flour a little thicker than milk, dust the fish in the flour, dip in the batter mix then crumb.
If you're having a Friday fish fry I wouldn't worry to much about seasoning, the fish itself should be tasty enough
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Old 02-23-2007, 10:48 AM   #7
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Not to play devil's advocate, but I used to let already thawed perch, bass, crappie and walleye filets soak in milk overnight in the fridge and it never made the fish soggy by dinnertime. I know fish has different textures, but I'm wondering if the fish is any good to begin with, like maybe it was thawed and refrozen before.
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Old 02-23-2007, 11:21 AM   #8
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well cod is very mild. a little salt and pepper will keep the flour and crumb from tasting like mush. I also would make sure the fish is well dried before flouring. Ideally you would do flour (light dusting), egg dip, bread crumbs (seasoned). fry.
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Old 02-23-2007, 11:59 AM   #9
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Thanks for all your replies..... Yes, I believe the fish is not that great 2 begin
The owner dosen't want any batter going on in the process. It's a VERY small kitchen and she thinks it will make 2 big a mess. I was thinking of thawing the fish in the walk in then leting it drain in a pan so, it dry when you go to get a piece. Then dust it with flour, dunk it in some milk, and in to some breadcrumbs.
Will seasoning the breadcrumbs lose their flavor once cooked? I was told that a while ago. or season the milk?
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:07 PM   #10
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First, stop thawing the fish in water. It is unneccessary. Move it from the freezer to the refrigerator on Thursday. Truthfully, I prefer a nice beer batter myself, but if the owner doesn't want you to batter them, well, it is HIS bar.

On Friday, lay out some paper towels and place the fillets on them, turning once after about 10 minutes, to dry. Set up three plates about the size of a pie plate, or use pie plates, leading to the deep fryer. Put flour in the first plate, egg wash (a mixture of 1/4 cup water for each egg used) in the second plate, and bread crumbs in the third. You can season the flour, the egg wash, the bread crumbs, or all three, or not, as you wish. The seasoning can be as simple as salt & pepper (with or without a touch of garlic powder), or a full blown cajun type seasoning such as Emeril Lagasse's Essence, depending on what the locals like. I don't suggest a commercial Cajun seasoning mix because they are loaded with salt. If you decide to try Cajun, make your own. There are a multitude of recipes on the internet, including Emeril's.

Now, starting with a dry fillet, dredge it in the flour, submerse it in the egg wash, roll it in the bread crumbs, and lay it GENTLY in the deep fryer basket. Use one hand only, so your "fryer basket handle" hand stays clean and dry. Put as many as will fit comfortably into the basket without crowding, then lower it slowly into the fryer. When they float, they're done.
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