Make Your Fish Go Further
How to make sure you're getting the very best from your seafood
While some meat will always be cheaper than seafood, you can still be savvy in the way that you prepare and eat fish. To help you make your catch go further, we’ve come up with five ingenious ways to help you glean every last morsel of deliciousness from whatever catch you've got in.
Crack those claws and chisel those cheeks
Many people forget about the meat which hides in both the claws of langoustines and those spindly lobster legs - but it’s still in there, and it’s still delicious. Likewise, if you’ve got a whole fish, don’t forget about the pockets of goodness inside the cheeks, the top of the head and close to the tail. One trick is to get a rolling pin and chopping and squeeze out the flesh from tubular legs of lobsters, like you’re squeezing out toothpaste from a tube! It’s much faster than trying to pick at things with just your fingers.
Save the shells!
Don’t even think about throwing away that huge pile of prawn, lobster and crab shells sitting in the middle of the table! Instead, bake them carefully at 160 degrees Celsius for half an hour to dry them out and deepen some of those incredible flavours, before using them to make a big batch of freezer-friendly bisque or seafood stock, adding a little saffron if you’re feeling adventurous. Your homemade stock will add an amazing flavour to future fish pies, stews and chowders in comparison to a premade stock cube.
Think fishcakes for fantastic flavour on cheaper fillets
Some fish are milder than others – coley and pollock spring to mind, but don’t discount these fish on the basis of being bland. They’re an excellent choice for cooking gently, and then turning into fishcakes: an easy weeknight meal to get your omega 3s in without the fuss. Of course, fishcakes can be flavoured any way you like, from simple parsley and lemon, to Asian-inspired spring onion and chilli, and even a Spanish twist of chorizo and manchego. The world is your oyster so to speak, so go mad with your combos!
Something a little different? Try a fish curry
Currying your fish is a great way to make a belly-filling feast: bonus points to you if you can use the homemade stock from your previous prawns for extra oomph. Your flavour profile can be anything from Thai style lemongrass and coconut, to a more punchy Goan fish curry – use any firm white fish you like. Another good tip is to use shrimp paste or fish sauce to carry over more flavour into your veg and sauce in addition to the fish itself. Right at the end, stir through some shell-on, cooked mussels for an impressive but surprisingly inexpensive touch.
Cook up some crab meat spaghetti
If you’ve ever dressed a crab, you’ll know it’s quite fiddly and there’s not much white meat in there. Crab is one of the more high-end seafood options, especially if you buy it pre-dressed - but you can make it go further in a dreamy light and lemony seafood spaghetti, or turn up the heat by including some chilli. Using spaghetti or linguine makes sure you get a great coating of crab meat on every strand, and the pairing of a light sauce makes sure that the crab still shines through as the main element in the dish.