When buying fish you need to know your store. The store must have good refrigeration. When exposed, the ice should cover the fish enough to keep it cool. Fresh fish should smell fresh. It must have a slight smell of sea breeze. It should never have a strong fishy smell. A whole fresh fish should have clear, shiny eyes. The scales should be shiny and adhere well to the skin. The gills should be bright red or pink. Steaks and fillets should be moist and free from drying out or browning around the edges. Never buy fish from a store when cooked seafood is stored alongside raw seafood. When buying canned fish, never buy bulging or dented canned foods.
Fish is also purchased frozen. When buying frozen fish, make sure that the packaging is not damaged and that the fish is frozen. Never buy frozen fish covered in ice crystals or that appear to have freezer burns. Always buy frozen fish below the frost line in the display case. Frozen shellfish must be packed in airtight, moisture-proof containers. Prepared frozen shellfish such as crab cakes or breaded shrimp must be frozen and must not exhibit any discoloration, drying or unpleasant odor.
Fresh shrimp, prawns, lobster, soft shell crabs and brown shrimp should have a uniform light colored tail without any discoloration. Molluscs in their shells must be alive and hold firmly to their shells when handled. If you buy fresh oysters, look for a natural creamy color in a clear liquid.
It is best to buy fresh seafood the day you go to eat it. If this is not possible, you will need to keep it in the fridge or freezer until it is ready and cooked.
Seafood is an excellent source of protein, monounsaturated fatty acids, and many minerals. Seafood contains the greatest sources of iodine and potassium. Most seafood is also low in saturated fat.
Fish can be classified into freshwater fish, saltwater fish, and crustaceans. Each of the categories differs slightly in nutritional value. Freshwater fish provide magnesium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, and copper. Marine fish and shellfish are rich in iodine, fluorine, phosphorus, copper, iron, calcium and cobalt. The fat content of fish varies not only with the size and type of fish, but also with the time of year. Oily fish, which include halibut, mackerel, and salmon, are higher in fat but contain more vitamins A and D. Shellfish are low in fat but are higher in cholesterol than most other fish.
Store seafood safely
Fresh fish, shrimp, scallops, freshwater shrimp and lobster tail can be stored in airtight freezer bags or plastic containers and kept in the refrigerator. The scallops and fresh crustacean tails can be kept for three to four days. Fresh fish can be stored for five to seven days.
Scallops, shellfish tails, and fish can be frozen in water and stored in the freezer at 0 ° F for four to six months. You should thaw these frozen items in the refrigerator overnight.
Live hard-shelled mollusks can stay alive for a week to 10 days stored without ice in the refrigerator if stored at 340 F and 380 F.
Freshly shelled shellfish can be stored for up to 10 days if packaged in ice and stored in the refrigerator.
Fresh soft-shell crabs can be stored for up to two days if stored in freezer bags and packaged in ice in the refrigerator. They can be stored for up to six months when stored in freezer bags and stored in a freezer at 0 ° F. They should be thawed in the refrigerator.
Handling and safety
To avoid problems when handling or preparing your fish for cooking, you need to take some precautions. You should always wash your hands with hot, soapy water before and after handling raw seafood. Do not leave cooked or raw seafood unrefrigerated for more than two hours. This includes preparation time. When marinating fish, do so in the refrigerator and always throw away the marinade you used. Bacteria will linger on any surfaces the raw fish touches. Do not reuse a kitchen towel or sponge that was used to clean counters or other surfaces you used when preparing food. You need to replace the sponges regularly. You should always wash your countertops, utensils, plates, cutting boards and other surfaces that have been touched by raw seafood. Always use hot, soapy water for cleaning after handling seafood. This should include the inside of your refrigerator.
When cooking fish, the 10 minute rule is a good guide for cooking fish. This rule also applies to baking, broiling, broiling, steaming and poaching. Measure the fish at the thickest part. Figure 10 minutes of cooking time for each inch of thickness. If the fish is less than an inch, try three to five minutes. Add five minutes if the fish is cooked in a sauce. Double the cooking time if the fish is frozen.
The fish is cooked when the flesh is opaque and begins to crumble easily when tested with a fork at the thickest part. The fish is usually ready when the internal temperature reaches 1450 F. You should cook the shrimp until they turn pink and are firm. Depending on the size, it takes three to five minutes to boil or steam a pound of medium-sized shrimp in their shells. Shellfish, such as clams, mussels, and oysters, will become plump and opaque when fully cooked. The edges of the oysters will straighten up when they are fully cooked. Scallops turn milky white or opaque and firm when fully cooked. They take three to four minutes to cook completely depending on the size. Lobster turns bright red when fully cooked. You should allow five to six minutes per book. Do not put the lobster in the pot until the water begins to boil. The cooking time does not start until the water starts to boil again after putting the lobster in the pot.
If you like raw or lightly marinated seafood, you should make sure that your seafood comes from certified waters. You can request to see the certificate. You should keep this type of seafood dish in the refrigerator until you are ready to eat the food.
Seafood can be a safe source of nutritious protein if we handle our seafood with care.
If you have a fitness question or concern, write to “Tips to be Fit”, PO Box 53443, Philadelphia, PA 19105 or email [email protected] Previous articles can be found at www.phillytrib.com by searching for “Tips for Getting in Shape”.