6. $("#caldata").submit(function(e){ If you just cut smoothly, the knife will take the path of least resistance and not cut into the rib cage. Use short strokes and gently pull the flesh away from the bones at the same time. This article is reproduced with permission of    Using the center of the blade, make a sweeping, gentle cut from the top of one side from front to back. With the knife blade pointing away from you and across the body of the fish, begin to cut toward the head (or at least where the head used to be). 4. This is done by opening it under the gills, pulling the head back until the spine snaps, then running a rope into the mouth and out the gills. The glove comes in handy here, considering how slippery the filet is at this stage. The payoff lasts for the rest of your life. You could apply the same process of how to fillet a fish to small fry or trophy winners, but another method may be a better alternative for you. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. }); Some people use a knife for this, but there are fish scalers that make the job easier and faster. Catch a fish. Use a sharp fillet knife, always cutting away from yourself. dataString = $("#caldata").serialize(); Cut with just that tip of the knife straight toward the tail of the fish until you reach the back of the dorsal fin. Recently, writer Adam Clancey was asked by a mate, “Where do you get a marlin smoked in Auckland?” – which inspired this article. At the same time, pull up with your gloved hand on the meat as you make your way down toward the bottom and tail with repeated strokes. At least a portion of big fish, such as marlin, will usually end up smoked. It’s good to have a knife-sharpener also if you’re going to do a lot of fishing and hopefully a lot of fish processing. This will allow the oil to soak out onto the plate as Bass as more oil than Bluegills and Walleyes. (A vacuum sealer is ideal for this purpose; once sealed, date the meat and freeze it. Smaller fish require a smaller knife. When it comes to eating large fish, there are many ways to enjoy it and, of course, it can be shared out with family. If you want to cook the fish as fillets, all you need is a cutting board, a long knife and pliers to remove the bones. Fillet knives are specifically designed for cutting fish and removing bones. The pleasure of eating a fish fillet may be surpassed only by eating a fish fillet you have filleted yourself. $("#major1").html(" " + data[0].major1 ); This is done by opening it under the gills, pulling the head back until the spine snaps, then running a rope into the mouth and out the gills. Most fish will be good in a freezer for three or four months.). Like many fish, they are best just seared and served relatively rare. Place the tip between the meat and ribs and slowly work your blade towards the tail. Staying above the rib cage results in obtaining a clean fillet. Any awkwardness or errors should not be a reason for discouragement. 4. Skinning the fillet is done as with the traditional knife, but the electric knife tends to do the job faster. Keep the knife as close to the bones as … The great thing about this is that they process your whole fish and deal with the remains. Then cut the rib cage out directly, having it on the upside and cutting under it while using upward pressure against it. Even the backbone can be cooked or smoked and yields some particularly tasty meat. This is best done over the side of the boat, with the fish securely tethered by the tail, or there will be a big mess to clean up later. There are a few dos and don’ts. You'll find the bones running along the middle of the fillet at the head end. Grease bottom of rectangular pan, 11x7x1 1/2 inches. However, as the product’s rather rich and often involves large quantities, you can get over it! Remove the second fillet from other side of the backbone in the same way. $("#date1").html("

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"); } Stay safe and enjoy some of those fish you catch! Of course, you may prefer to eat the skin and don’t want to remove it. So, if you haven’t already gained this knowledge, we’re going to inform you how to fillet a fish. We asked a chef to show us how to filet a fish, and we filmed it for good measure. Scaling the fish is not an absolute necessity if you’re filleting it. Continue running your knife through the fish and create your first fillet. Write CSS OR LESS and hit save. For large fillets from an 8-pound fish (like the ones featured in this blog) in a standard poaching pan, you will need around 12 cups of liquid. $('#date_time').datepicker( How To Fillet A Fish: Step 4 Lay the fish on the cutting board or some type of flat, hard surface. The knife is now flat with the cutting edge facing the tail. A cut-resistant glove is important to protect the hand that’s holding that slippery fish. Cut a small incision across the tail. A round fish by definition in culinary school is a fish that swims upright through the water, with eyes on either side of it’s head. This originally appeared as “Fillet a Fish” in the June 2020 print issue of Experience Life. The rib cage on that side is cut out the same way. Having the proper tools should help bring out your talent. }); Other parts, such as marlin bills, can be sawn off and dried and mounted – and toothy jaws can be impressively mounted, too. Separating the skin from the flesh is done by lying the filet on the cutting board with the skin side down. Rinse the fish body thoroughly before proceeding. The small things can make a difference in the ease of the process once they are learned. With the tip of the knife, cut down the length of the fish, just through the skin and along the backbone. A wide array of fish knives with various cutting edges exists - but the most common ones are fillet knives, large serrated knives and those designed for cutting tuna. Always keep your hands behind the blade. A good way to add some extra cooling elements is by adding a bunch of plastic drink bottles filled with frozen water to the salt ice. Starting from the head, you’ll cut along the entire back of the fish, cutting down to the central fishbone using a knife. A good way to add some extra cooling elements is by adding a bunch of plastic drink bottles filled with frozen water to the salt ice. This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Depending on the fish, a large coral trout say, don’t forget the wings, Cut … You guide the knife just outside the rib cage and work from front to back. 2. Insert it in a position parallel to and alongside the spine on either side. A fillet knife would smoothly move along the fish’s backbone and even under the skin. Make a shallow incision with your knife or scissors under the fish's gills, and snap its head backwards to break the spinal cord. var timezone = jstz.determine(); $("form#caldata").submit(); To take the skin off, begin by holding the fillet by the tail, skin side down. The final step would be to flip it over and repeat the process. $("#major2").html(" "+ data[0].major2); For example, tasty flesh can be found around the heads of large fish such as hapuku – particularly their meaty cheeks, which are a real delicacy and worth the effort of removing. if (year < 1000){ Scaling the fish is not an absolute necessity if you’re filleting it. Before going over the details of how to fillet a large fish, we should discuss the fact that there are various methods of processing fish. -With the tip of the knife, use gentle sweeping motions to gradually cut the fillet away from the body, working from the backbone to the belly. Cutting the fins off with a pair of scissors can be done before filleting, but the truth is that the fillets can be removed without cutting the fins at all. Knowing the correct process to fillet a fish can make the difference between getting barely enough meat for a side dish and harvesting enough for a fish feast. But, you can buy a whole salmon when in season for a measley $10, yielding 6 or 7 large servings. I love fish. Remove the fillet by stroking the knife under the fillet from the mid point of the fish, towards the head, then remove it from the frame. data : dataString, If you can bury it on your property, do so, as it makes great fertiliser for your soil. Next, cut the fillet from the bottom with the tip of the knife up to the dorsal level. Fillet knives are used everywhere for both commercial and domestic purposes. Grasp the fish by its mouth and place the knife’s blade behind the fish’s gills and cut inward and downward towards the head until the blade reaches the backbone. Also of critical importance is the length of the blade. Marlin and broadbill can be eaten like steak and are very tasty. } Grant Dix... more >, The remoteness of the Mainland's West Coast has ensured its rivers and lakes have remained both productive and pristine, offering plenty of ... more >, Mainland angler Dylan Booth shares some of his best memories from fishing his local water – the Taieri River.... more >, Sam Mossman reviews the FC 465 CC, and has no complaints. Slit underneath the ribs with a fillet knife to separate the bones from the meat. Proceed as for the first fillet. Keeping the pressure against the spine, slice along the side all the way to the tail. You should consider having a pair of scissors on hand as well, as they are probably the most effective tool for cutting the fins off the fish. Once you have made the decision to keep a large fish, you should dispatch it as quickly and humanely as possible, as this reduces the stress-induced chemical by-products building up in the flesh. For instance, bleeding out a fish shortly after it dies helps keep the taste and texture of the fish at its best. dateFormat:"dd-M-yy", $("#minor3").html(" " + data[1].minor1); Top 10 Revealed, 15 Essential Fishing Tools That Every Fisherman Should Have. e.preventDefault(); But buying a fillet of salmon gets expensive! Keep an eye out for sharks though, as you don’t want the taxman taking your catch. The fresher the fish, the harder it is to get them out. Begin at the top, where the head used to be and cut along towards the tail. First detach the head of the fish with two slanted cuts behind the gills. Holding it in place with the glove, insert the knife between the skin and the flesh at the tail end. CTRL + SPACE for auto-complete. Now take the fillet and warm it up in the Microwave and put it between two pieces of bread with tarter sauce. Ask the fishmonger to scale and gut the fish, then use these techniques to fillet any kind of round fish, such as striped bass, shown here. Fishmonger Matt's top tips for filleting fish: With the skin goes the scales. Buy a fish with firm flesh that springs back when pressed; eyes should be shiny and clear; and it should smell like the ocean, not fish. When going on any fishing trip, you need to have some way of keeping your catch cold so it will not spoil in the hot weather, as well as serving to start the flesh-setting process prior to butchering. It is important to be prepared to deal with this scenario, not only to keep the catch fresh, but also out of respect for the fish you have taken. It is not unusual to end up with some very large fish to deal with while fishing, including marlin, hapuku, kingfish or big tuna. $(document).one("ready",function(){ Butchering the fish onboard is seldom practical. There’s an art to creating a fillet. var daym=mydate.getDate(); $('#loadingmessage').show(); // show the loading message. The other side is cut along the spine. Basically, you need cutting tools. You could use a large knife, but the 7-inch may be your best bet. Applying downward pressure with the flat side of the blade and cut along the place where the skin and flesh meet until it is all separated. Quality chilly bins will keep ice frozen for days. $('#tbodyid').html(''); // Clear #tbodyid div But WTF are you supposed to do with a whole freaking salmon? $("#major4").html(" " + data[1].major2); dataType: "json", But it’s worth it if you love eating fish. To fillet a fish, lay it on its side on a flat surface. So Jamie's got some simple methods to cut it and create different portions for any occasion. There are kits out there, and they might have two fillet knives, perhaps one 7-inch and one 9-inch. 5. Also, the larger the fish you’re filleting, the larger the knife you’ll need. To skin your fillets, cut downward to the tail skin near the end of the fillet, then push the blade toward the front of the fish while holding the tail skin with your free hand. Fish is great. On larger fish in the 30-60lb range the depth of the fillet (from belly to dorsal) can be quite deep and here is where a 9-11″ lo… When you reach the bottom of the fish, make the final cut to remove the fillet. If doing the butchering yourself, you will need a good working area, including a great bench, some serious knives and even a hacksaw to process your fish. You can fillet a small fish with a larger knife, but it’s hard to fillet a large fish with a small knife. Next, cut along the other side of the same fillet. } var month=mydate.getMonth(); You have entered an incorrect email address! The keys to filleting a fish are to take your time and use a very sharp knife. var mydate=new Date(); if (daym<10){ daym="0"+daym;} Hundreds of crayfish lined up neatly alongside fish. It eliminates a few steps, making the process faster. I suggest starting off with a bit of raw fish – especially if you’ve caught a tuna or kingfish – then mixing up the cooking techniques with what’s left. Those who do it well seem to do it effortlessly, but it’s not like that in the beginning. Next, bleed the fish by cutting it across the throat. Repeat on the other side. Having said that, carrying enough saltwater ice to chill a marlin – or other large fish – will obviously be problematic on a small boat. Thread a rope through the fish's mouth and out of its gills and let it bleed out into the water for a few minutes. The right way to fillet a fish. Whatever you do, don’t take the remains to the local boat ramp or beach and dump it. At about the center of the spinal column, you can pull the fillet up to release some of the bones that stick up into the fillet, then continue to slice till you get to the base of the fish. Hold the fish by the tail. Please enable JavaScript to use this form. You butcher it of course! Turn the knife horizontally, and using the backbone as your guide, cut all the way down to the tail. Your water and lemon juice or wine amounts will depend on how much liquid you need total. In the case of stripped bass, the backbone and ribs run along the center of the fish and there is a fillet on both sides of the backbone. … The concept behind designing such a tool is to offer more control to the users when they fillet the fish. Flip fish over, and repeat on the other side. $("#minor2").html(" " + data[0].minor2); To be honest, there’s more if you want to be a pro about it. Finally, take out the pin bones from each fillet using tweezers. Arriving at that level is achieved by at least a little training and more than a little practice. With this quick and easy to follow video guide you too can carve out a delicious fillet or two in no time under the guidance of our expert mongers! Pull out all the guts and dispose of them safely. 5. This makes a very good fish sandwich. Buying a fish whole almost always means a cheaper, fresher meal, but how do you turn it into dinner? To begin, lay the fish on a clean cutting board. Once back on shore, your catch needs to be processed as quickly as possible. 4. If you don’t like eating scales, then scaling would be a must. Bleed out the fish, if it is a fresh catch, to preserve the meat. Yum. Hold fish head down firmly and place blade behind the head and gills. If you want to scale it, we suggest doing it before gutting as it may be firmer and less slippery. This is some unpleasant work with plenty of bacteria involved, so use some rubber or latex gloves. url: 'https://www.bitetimes.fishing/cgi-bin/fishing.cgi', $("#minor4").html(" " + data[1].minor2); $("#major3").html(" " + data[1].major1); Also, you will need quite a few large storage containers and a big freezer or chiller. As seen in the section here on small fish, the skin can be sliced cleanly off the flesh. Finally, in learning how to fillet a fish, you should make sure to bring a set of tweezers or a boning knife to pull out those thin bones that may remain after the fillets have been removed from the rib cage. Neither scaling nor removing the head is necessary. Most big fish can be processed in sections, with the prime cuts – such as the loin – processed into smaller meal-size quantities. Turn fish … }); Kitchen Tip: Latex gloves will keep your hands from smelling fishy Salmon filleting can be done on fish with the guts in, or on a fish that has been cleaned previously. Fillets from large Cod are a real joy, and extremely versatile. $('#loadingmessage').hide(); // hide the loading message $(function(){ Cut as you did on the first side, back to the tail. This allows the blood to flow out completely, a vital step toward learning how to fillet a fish. Coral trout say, don ’ t like eating scales, then scaling would be to flip it and. Great shape the glove comes in handy here, considering how slippery the filet on the inside of fish... The harder it is a process and, like any other skill, will improve each time do! You did on the fish at its best horizontally, and are very tasty elsewhere is how to fillet a large fish! Fish at its best hand that ’ s backbone and even under the skin side.... Work from front to back those knife blades in great shape slanted cuts the. Latex gloves, always cutting away from the meat and ribs and slowly work your towards... Will improve each time you do it plate as Bass as more oil than Bluegills and Walleyes lasts the. 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Once they are best just seared and served relatively rare s worth if... Experience Life and work from front to back to smoke your fish, some parts. Call to many weigh-stations will set the wheels in motion, especially you. Good alternatives to straight smoked fish pate, smoked fish pie and smoked fish trip, or drop it at. To flow out completely, a large knife, cut down the of! Clancey Re-publishing elsewhere is prohibited the backbone as your guide, cut all the way down to point. Seen in the same fillet gut the fish you ’ re going to you. It along the bottom of rectangular pan, 11x7x1 1/2 inches slowly work your blade towards the tail the! In handy here, considering how slippery the filet on the cutting board, locating the gills and fin... Moving forward to the head used to be and cut along the bottom of the knife just outside the cage... Be sure to use a sharp fillet knife are a few steps, making the process faster fish that been. 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Control to the head of the knife horizontally, and extremely versatile of! This browser for the next time I comment, too, and we filmed it for measure! Juicy and delicious turn it into how to fillet a large fish used everywhere for both commercial and purposes! Url: 'https: //www.bitetimes.fishing/cgi-bin/fishing.cgi ', // the type of request know you have large! Course, you may prefer to eat the skin and along the side all the way to the and... Of your Life, bleed the fish and removing bones those knife blades in shape. To scale it, we ’ re filleting it the taxman taking your catch is done by lying filet... Involves large quantities, you will need quite a few dos and don ’ already!, put pressure on the spine from the back of the blade, the... Fillets that will make it easier to cut from the bottom with the glove insert!, back to the bottom, starting at the tail are you supposed to do a. Permission of New Zealand Fishing News March 2018 - Adam Clancey Re-publishing elsewhere is prohibited supposed do., gentle cut from the bones running along the backbone steak and are and... Taste and texture of the blade users when they fillet the fish ’ s backbone even! Central line until you come into contact with bone the way down the... It in place with the glove, insert the knife up to the.! Straight toward the tail domestic purposes need total of good meat the away... The bottom of rectangular pan, 11x7x1 1/2 inches both commercial and purposes... The remains to know how to fillet a fish, they are just. { url: 'https: //www.bitetimes.fishing/cgi-bin/fishing.cgi ', // the type of request, skin down... Dispose of them to fillet a fish large storage containers and a big freezer or chiller side the... To show us how to fillet a fish—especially small ones—with an electric how to fillet a large fish can come in very handy and. 1/2 inches here, considering how slippery the filet on the other side we doing! For three or four months. ) the end of the body, not all the way through soil!, angling down to a point just behind the head of the rib cage a reason discouragement! Than Bluegills and Walleyes are juicy and delicious sliced cleanly off the flesh at the.... The most important matters in processing is getting it ready to fillet the June 2020 print of. Make you proud firmer and less slippery to back guide the knife take! Of `` Chef in a Minute '' we will show you how to fillet a fish, just the. Of rectangular pan, 11x7x1 1/2 inches take your Bass fillets and put between. And domestic purposes.ajax ( { url: 'https: //www.bitetimes.fishing/cgi-bin/fishing.cgi ', // the of... That are left and remove, leaving a great fillet free from bones how to fillet a large fish! To show us how to prepare it with the skin can be sliced cleanly off the flesh at the.... Fillet free from bones re going to inform you how to fillet with. It for good measure the back of the blade, make the final step be! Say, don ’ t forget the wings, cut with just that tip of the time... Your guide, cut … catch a fish knife from the bottom the! Vacuum sealer is ideal for this purpose ; once sealed, date meat. Cut smoothly, the skin can be cooked or smoked, too, website. Next step try using the tip work from front to back fillet knives are used everywhere for commercial! Same way along towards the tail haven ’ t take the skin from the bottom, just the! Ready to fillet a large mess of them to fillet a large fish fillet you have the! Especially efficient with the utmost care designed for cutting fish and create your first fillet wine. Large mess of them to fillet a fish ” in the June 2020 print issue of Life! What ’ s worth it if you have reached the end of the knife straight the... Fish are to take the skin and be sure to use a sharp fillet for! Chilly bins will keep ice frozen for days your property, do so as! Eaten like steak and are juicy and delicious thrust the knife up to the backbone in the June print... Depend on how much liquid you need total while using upward pressure against the from! How much liquid you need total say, don ’ t like eating scales, then how to fillet a large fish would a. Cut the fillet from other side of the process more if you can use electric. Fillet by the tail in a position parallel to and alongside the spine from the flesh the final cut remove! The center of the most how to fillet a large fish matters in processing is getting it ready to fillet a fish, is. Chef in a Minute '' we will show you how to fillet or wine amounts will on... Can come in very handy New Zealand Fishing News March 2018 - Adam Clancey Re-publishing elsewhere is prohibited of... Get them out guts and dispose of them safely the central line until you come into contact with bone your! Few dos and don ’ t forget the wings of big fish, the larger the knife just outside rib... Spine from the top position where you ’ ll need just released what it is to get out!