Creating the Perfect Fried Fish at Home
The more you know about fish and frying, the closer you are to creating the perfect fried fish at home. Good recipes for fried fish (like this pan-fried flounder recipe) abound. But why not get out your chef’s hat and search out some of the secrets behind preparing delicious fried fish recipes? Let’s take a look at which types of fish are best for frying, the best kinds of oil to use for frying fish, and some pro chef tips.
Best Types of Fish for Frying
The qualities of the best fish for frying are that they have a neutral flavor and they are lean. Note: Stay away from fishiness in the flavor and dense, oily types of fish that aren’t compatible with frying, such as tuna and salmon.
Creating the best fried fish at home begins with choosing the best fish for frying, and any of the following are ideal:
- Alaskan cod
Best Types of Oil for Fish Frying
Flavor, flavor transfer, and the smoke point are the three qualities to consider when choosing oil to ensure you have all you need for creating the perfect fried fish at home. First, the flavor of the oil should be neutral so that the fish isn’t overpowered. Secondly, it’s best to fry fish with oil that prevents flavors from transferring. Lastly, the smoke point of the oil you use for frying fish is also a key consideration.
The smoke point is also known as the burning point. This is the temperature at which oil breaks down and begins smoking. The standard home cooking temperature for pan-frying (sauté) on the stovetop is 248 °F. Standard temperatures for deep frying fish are between 320–356 °F, though ideal temperatures are higher, as noted in pro chef tips. Whether you plan to pan fry or deep fry fish, the following are the best kinds of oil to use for frying fish.
Refined canola oil has a neutral flavor and a high smoke point of 400 degrees. A healthy option, canola oil contains high levels of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
Peanut oil has a smoke point of 450 degrees. It is affordable and has a neutral flavor that won’t interfere with the flavors in your recipe. An important benefit of peanut oil as far as deep frying goes is that it prevents flavor transfer.
The healthiest option when you are deep frying fish is coconut oil. Due to the neutral flavor of coconut oil, it helps to reduce flavor transfer from one batch of fried food to the next. The smoke point for coconut oil is 450 degrees.
An affordable option for frying in bulk and stocking up on oil is cottonseed oil. It has a high smoke point of 450 degrees.
Vegetable oil is an affordable option but is often a blend of different types of oils, including sunflower and canola. For this reason, it’s important to check the smoke point before you choose a certain brand of vegetable oil, particularly for deep frying.
Pro Chef Tips for Frying Fish at Home
- Just as location, location, location is what the real estate industry is all about, frying fish successfully is largely about temperature, temperature, temperature! Fish is delicate and can turn tough and leathery when exposed to high heat. This is why fish should be coated in batter before deep frying. The batter seals in moisture and protects the fish from the high temperature of the oil. The ideal temperature for deep-frying fish is between 360 and 380 degrees.
- When pan-frying your fish, flip the fish only once to maintain a crispy texture. It’s also important not to cover the pan-fried fish after cooking it.
- Generously apply the seasoning in fish recipes. When pan-frying, pro chefs recommend salt and pepper along with fennel or rosemary.
- Pan-frying fish works best with small whole fish less than 1½” thick.
- Butter gives fried fish the best flavor, but it burns. A delicious option for pan-frying is to use a concoction of ½ butter and ½ vegetable oil.
Fresh seafood products are the chief ingredient for creating the perfect fried fish at home, and in Wethersfield CT, City Fish Market is the place to shop. Our customers know they can depend upon our high standards of freshness and customer service. Call us today at 860-522-3129, contact us using our online form, or stop by today for the best seafood for cooking fried fish at home.