Not fresh fish - do you know how to recognize it?
There are several main criteria to follow in determining the freshness of live or defrosted fish. Read this article and prepare yourself for shopping with Fresh Catch Fish Co.
The most important characteristic of a fish is its freshness – and the freshest fish is the one that has just been caught.
This article will guide you able to recognize the characteristics of fresh fish. It is very important to get yourself familiar with this so you will be able to buy good fish for your next dinner.
How do I recognize fresh fish?
Here is our simple checklist. Take it to the store and use it in the kitchen!
1. The smell of fresh fish is specific to its origin (sea, lake, river, fishpond) and it is pleasant and neutral.
Spoiled fish has an unpleasant, sharp smell of trimethylamine (bad fish) and rot.
2. Gills and fins of fresh fish are moist. Healthy gills are of a nice, bright red color.
In old fish are dry, covered with sticky slime, grayish brown color, and smell bad.
3. Skin in live and fresh fish is moist, must be unharmed, and have a naturally metallic glow. Scales must be tightly attached to the body. The surface of healthy, fresh fish must be tight and shiny so that fish slides out of your hands.
Discoloration and cracked skin are signs of rotting fish. Old or bad fish has already started losing their scales.
4. The body of a fresh fish is firm and has a specific consistency and appearance. When pressed it should bounce back.
5. Water test - When we put the fish into the water, fresh - it will sink, old - it will stay on the surface.
For those who looking for an additional portion of information...
Freshly caught fish are easy to spot - you just need to know what you need to check.
When evaluating a fish, we pay attention to two aspects:
Its natural qualities are smell, elasticity, and freshness. But also, for the disadvantages that appear along with the stale. You must realize that the freshness of the fish is two important things - the taste we are striving for and the guarantee of not poisoning. Everything else depends on our preferences as to the taste, after all, some species suit more or less.
But before you cook the fish, you have to buy it. In the store, it usually happens that we do not have the opportunity to take the fish in our hands to thoroughly assess its freshness. As it were, we have to make such an assessment from a distance, and sometimes even through the glass.
The second thing is the skin, which should be shiny, tight, and therefore not sagging. The collapse tells us that the meat beneath it no longer has its natural tension. The second sign of stale is areas of dryness alternating with shiny ones. It looks like a protective pattern on military clothing. This is not a good sign. Fish usually has natural protective mucus on their skin, which is a good sign. Even the husk has a thin layer of it.
If the fish is already filleted, it is difficult to judge it visually. The eye is gone, and the skin is usually underneath. The best signal is to put a fish on ice or even one fillet on top of another. Fresh fish still has muscular tension, so it arranges itself in such a way that it keeps its shape. A less fresh fish will take the shape of what it lies on. It will bend. While the narrow ends of the fillets, i.e., the tail, can be more plastic, if the main body is lying on the ice like soft material, it should be a big warning.
Freezing is one of the most effective methods of food preservation, which results in the inhibition of microbiological processes as well as enzymatic and biochemical changes, which significantly reduce the quality and safety of products.
In industrial conditions, freezing is carried out in various types of devices or installations in such a way that the temperature range from 32 to 23 °F is exceeded as quickly as possible, in which more than 70% of the water contained in the product crystallizes.
Usually, fresh fish lose nutrients faster than frozen food. It is also influenced by the development of bacterial microflora, which occurs even in cooling products. Slower, but the bacteria keep multiplying anyway.
There should be one conclusion: freezing only slightly can change the nutritional value of food products (all frozen products, not just fish).
Defrosted fish quality check:
must not have a foreign or stale smell,
must not have damaged skin,
meat must not show signs of dryness, and after being cooked must have a pleasant taste and smell, firm consistency and white, light to dark pink color, specific certain kinds of fish.
5 Signs that fish is a fresh summary
White, pink, light red, orange, or yellow - characteristic of a given species. What should draw our attention and warn us before buying? Change of proper color, lack of gloss, the appearance of black spots.
When thawed, it should be mild, pleasant, melon-like, and seaweed-like, species-specific. Sour, slightly putrefactive, different (e.g. chemical compounds) smell disqualifies the product.
Texture and juiciness
The fish should be fibrous, and the meat should be firm, without delamination, tender, juicy and elastic (the deformation after pressing the finger in the dorsal part disappears quickly). What disqualifies the product? Flesh tissue is greasy and dried, relaxed, muscle dissection, and deformation after pressure.
Specific to a given species. If the fish is bitter, rancid, or sour, stop eating the fish.
The spine breaks when you try to break away. If the backbone and bones are lightly attached to the meat, the fish is not suitable for eating.
The fish is of normal build and muscularity, the line of cuts is smooth, and there are no guts left over. The surface cessation takes up no more than 10% of the area. The skin of the fish has a natural color and shine, it has an iridescent effect.
What disqualifies the product: the presence of parasites (!), Damage to the outer coatings, scratches, damage to skin and meat, discoloration, white spots, and tarnishing. Deep dryness - dehydration of meat tissue and skin, loss of elasticity.