It is important to thaw frozen fish, and it is essential to do it properly. Thawing vacuum sealed fish in the right way helps not only to preserve it from being contaminated by harmful parasites such as bacteria but also to help it retain its great taste and straight texture.
How To Thaw Vacuum Sealed Fish
There is more than one easy and straight forward method you can use to thaw frozen fish safely.
These methods include:
1. Thawing in the refrigerator
2. Cooking frozen fish
3. Thawing quickly.
It is important to note, however, that each of these methods has their unique way in which they are expected to be carried out to achieve the desired outcome. Let’s take, for instance, the first method: thawing in the refrigerator. The safest way to thaw fish is by placing it in the fridge the night before you intend to use it. This does not mean that you cannot thaw the fish if you need it right away as that can be done by putting fish in a pot of cold water. And if perhaps you are running out of time, then I suggest you try cooking it without thawing it.
Thawing in the refrigerator
This is the first method of thawing fish. It is the easiest and safest way of doing it. All you need to do is to carry out the following steps as outlined below to get the best result!
Note: you must be sure that the fish you are thawing is in perfect condition before you melt it and eventually consume it.
Be sure to examine the frozen fish you are purchasing near. This is done to ensure that the frozen fish is safe to it. Do not buy frozen fish or any seafood that that is packaged in plastic that has not been torn or worn-out.
Also make sure you purchase seafood that is COMPLETELY frozen, not partially thawed. The frozen fish should be stored in the freezer case just below the frost line.
It is not advisable to buy fish or any other seafood that has ice crystals covering it as this means it has been stored for a very long time, and may no longer be good to eat.
2. Place it in the refrigerator overnight to thaw it gradually.
Put the fish on the refrigerator the night before you want to prepare the fish. This is done to allow the fish to slowly defrost and also keep it in cold temperature while it thaws.
However, it is essential to note that thawing fish in the refrigerator takes several hours. Therefore, If you are out of time, or perhaps you have minimal time, it is advisable to try a different method.
Do not ever be misled into placing it on the counter to let it thaw as the outer portions of the fish could start to go wrong way before the inside is completely defrosted.
Note that if you are using this method to thaw vacuum packaged fish, be sure to either remove or open the packaging before leaving the fish in the refrigerator. Failure to do so can lead to the development of toxin-producing bacteria.
3. Closely examine the thawed fish to make sure it is good.
It is necessary to state that thawed fish should have the same texture and smell as fresh fish. However, it might not have the exact new, bright colour. This does not mean that it should be mottled or discoloured.
To know if the thawed fish is good, sniff it. If it smells too fishy or decayed, then it is no longer suitable for use. Thawed fish may have a slightly fishy smell, but it should not be the type that makes you want to throw up.
4. Cook the fish according to your recipe.
Did you know that thawed fish can be used to replace fresh fish in any recipe? Ensure that you cook the fish to the proper temperature. The fish is ready when the texture is firm, and it is no longer translucent.
Cooking frozen fish
This is yet another method of thawing frozen fish. This method will also help you retain the excellent flavour, nutritional benefits and right texture of the fish. To learn the procedures on how to cook frozen fish, follow the instructions as outlined below:
1. Rinse the fish when you remove it from the freezer.
2. Cook the fish immediately.
Note that if you do not have the time to defrost the fish, you can skip cooking it frozen by using any of the following methods:
This is a straightforward method to carry out whether you start with fresh or raw fish. It gives you the most delicious and nutritious outcome you have ever tried. All you need to do is to place the fish in an inch or two of broth and slowly steam it.
Baking takes very little time. Just brush the fish with olive oil and place it in a roasting pan, then bake the fish until it is no longer opaque.
3. Know the exact recipes that require thawed fish.
Not all recipes require thawed fish. However, some recipes need thawed fish to achieve the right texture. It is therefore advisable to check the recipe you are using to be sure it requires you to use thawed fish to achieve your desired outcome.
Note that if you are not so sure if you can cook the fish while it is still frozen, I strongly advise that it is better to defrost it first, to be on the safer side.
But should in case if the recipe specifies that the fish should be thawed, you can melt it or even take the risk and cook it frozen. All you need to do is to add a few minutes to the specified cooking time and make sure that the fish is cooked through before you serve it.
This is the third and final method of thawing frozen fish I’ll be providing you. This method, like the first two methods explained above, also helps to maintain all the nutritional benefits and the best texture. To carry out this method successfully, follow the procedures as outlined below:
1. Seal the fish in a plastic bag.
Place the fish in a plastic bag and tie the bag in a knot to completely seal it. It is essential to fill the bag to prevent water from touching the fish. The cold, cold temperature of the water will be able to thaw the fish through the bag.
2. Put the fish in a pot of cold water.
If the fish floats at this point, but something that weights top to keep it submerged. The fish will thaw quickly in the cold water. Allow it to sit for nothing less than one hour to make sure it melts completely before using.
You can as well run the fish under cold running water to thaw it as an alternative method, as this will thoroughly defrost the fish more rapidly than placing it in a pot of cold water. Check the fish to see if it has entirely defrosted by pressing your finger against the flesh. Note: if it still feels frozen in the middle, let it continue to thaw.
Do not be tempted to thaw fish in hot water, as this will soften the fish unevenly and way too quickly, thereby changing its taste and texture. Not only that, but thawing in hot water will also make the outer edges susceptible to getting contaminated with bacteria way before the inside of the fish is finished thawing.
3. Defrost it in the microwave.
Here, I have provided another alternative to icy water by using the “defrost” setting in your microwave.
This method is advisable to be used only if you are planning to cook the fish immediately after thawing.
Keep a close look to be careful not to cook the fish in the microwave. Carefully remove it while it is still cold to make sure that the texture and flavour do not start to deteriorate.
Some essential tips to follow:
1. Be sure not to rush the thaw as thawing frozen fish requires enough time.
2. A well-thawed fish should smell fresh, not fishy.
3. Do not re-freeze the fish.
4. Do not thaw fish with hot water as this could cause some undesirable effects like increasing bacteria to an unsafe level.
5. Do not try to bend the fish while thawing as this could break the fish.
How to cook frozen fish
This is a unique method of preparing frozen fish.
In this section of the article, I will be teaching you a unique method of preparing your frozen fish like salmon and cod.
1. 4 (4-6 oz.) cod or salmon portions
2. two teaspoons olive oil or vegetable oil
3. Salt and pepper to taste.
Add ingredients to shopping list. ✅
Instructions on how to prepare
1. preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Carefully remove frozen fish from all packaging and rinse under cold running water. This is done to remove any ice crystals that may be stuck with it.
4. Brush lightly with oil on all sides.
5. Bake for approximately 4 to 5 minutes.
6. Carefully remove from the oven and add your desired seasoning or sauce if you wish.
7. Continue to bake until it becomes hot and flaky in the centre. This should only take about 8 to 12 more minutes.
Note that thicker portions may need to be flipped over halfway through cooking and may require a few extra minutes to cook through.
How to defrost fish in the microwave
There is this feeling of joy when you pull your freezer door open to reveal an array of frozen fish. And then the next thing that comes to your mind is how to unlock those delicious nutrients and flavours to serve you and your loved ones at breakfast, lunch or dinner table. Of course, you first have to cook your fish correctly. But how? In this section of the article, I will be giving you a guide on how to defrost your fish in the microwave without messing up your kitchen.
This method is straightforward to carry out even if you are trying it for the first time. I can assure you the best result!
Guidelines on how to defrost fish in the microwave
1. Take your fish out of any packaging and put it on a microwaveable plate.
2. Using the ‘defrost’ function, microwave it for approximately 2 to 3 minutes.
Note that it may need to stay a bit longer if it is a thick fillet. Therefore, to be on the safer side, check that it is appropriately thawed by seeing if it is pliable but be sure that you do not start to cook it in the microwave either.
3. Use the defrosted fish to prepare any recipe of choice as soon as possible. Make sure you do not return it to the fridge or freezer as this could likely cause undesired effects.