Freezing and frying your catch

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by geoffoquinn, Jun 14, 2017.

  1. I have some filets from an annual charter my buddies and I do. I have eaten a lot of it but still have half left. I heard (amongst reading it here) some rumors that freezing them in salt water is a good option. I personally haven't tried it I figured I would give it a whirl.

    I went to grab the salt and beside it was my Kroger brand Chesapeake Bay style seasoning that I add to my cornmeal mix anyway. The main ingredient is salt so why not try it. If it turns out I will let you know. However I need some help getting the rest of the process right if I haven screwed up all ready.

    I want to see if anyone has a good reason why freezing fish in salt water isn't a great idea and also how to make my fish come out less greasy from the pan. My cornmeal mix tastes fantastic ( cornmeal, seafood seasoning, garlic powder, extra celery seed, and paprika to taste) but what am I doing wrong in the pan? I bring my oil an butter mix up to a heat to not burn the oil and fry them. I just am having trouble getting a nice cornmeal crust that isn't soggy. Any insight would be appreciated.
  2. I freeze in vacuum bag but used to freeze in water and never added salt. I keep fish cold before frying, pat water off them before batter. I use a dry batter also , dipping fish in cold milk then roll in the batter. Keeping the fish cold before frying I think helps keep batter on and if oil is to temp. , after frying I put pcs on paper towels to take off extra oil. I fry in peanut oil. Im sure everyone has a way of doing it that they like. I use a batter from Bass Pro, Uncle Bucks light and crispy.
    garhtr and SMBHooker like this.

  3. If you're getting greasy,soggy fish you're not getting oil up to temp. When you first put them in they're soaking up oil into the mix instead of frying.
  4. Muddy


    Use peanut oil. It has a lower viscosity and gives you a drier and crunchy finished product.
    geoffoquinn likes this.
  5. This is likely my issue with the oily fish. Butter burns at too low of a temperature for what I'm doing may be the reason I'm not getting it hot enough.
    Workingman and Saugeyefisher like this.
  6. Yep. Butter is unnecessary. What you put it in just fries the food,doesn't flavor it(unless its not hot enough and soaks in,then you eat it!).
    geoffoquinn likes this.
  7. I was careful to try not to over do the seasoned salt in the freezing process. Just enough to give it a slight maranade or brine I guess was my thinking.
  8. I appreciate the information
  9. ezbite

    ezbite the Susan Lucci of OGF

    i've never froze salted fish and don't plan on starting. I think it'll just make the fillets salty.
    Shortdrift and 9Left like this.
  10. I usually don't keep enough to freeze so I'm new to freezing them. If it works out I'll keep you posted here. If not maybe we can all learn something from my mistakes.
    ezbite likes this.
  11. Carpn


    I just use plain water . Fill the bag till it covers the fish , the zip it mostly shut and squeeze put the air and excess water then seal it .
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2017
  12. Just use water to freeze....get oil to 350 degrees and you will have nice crispy FIL uses salt when he freezes fish and the fish dont taste bad but you will be drinking 5 gallons of water after you eat them to keep you from dieing of thirst
    moondog5814 and Shortdrift like this.
  13. I always soak my fillets in saltwater after cleaning them. Sometimes, I use the same water to freeze them in bags, sometimes it's fresh water. I haven't noticed a difference. There's always salt in the seasoning I use to fry them anyways. Key thing about freezing fish is to fill the bag up to cover the fish with water and squeeze out any air. This will help to avoid freezer burn.

    Before frying the fish, sit the fillets out on paper towels to dry them out. Then, season them and place them in really hot oil. Just below the temp where the oil will start smoking. Putting them on a paper towel after cooking also helps. I usually just put a paper towel in the bottom of the bowl that I put them in.
  14. Food saver vacuum seal system.
    I've eaten 3 year old vac sealed perch that got "lost" in the freezer and it tasted just like fresh caught.
    moondog5814, Shortdrift, razu and 2 others like this.
  15. Also after you fry your fish,instead of letting it rest on paper towels. Let it rest on a cooling rack. Let air get around the whole fillet and the bottom won't turn soggy.
    I freeze my fillets submerged in tap water in freezer bags with all the air pushed out. Always works for me.....
    Shortdrift likes this.
  16. McLain


    I freeze trout in saltwater in freezer bags. The last batch of 2016 trout was thawed and cooked still tasted good a couple months ago. I think the thing with saltwater is its supposed to make it less "fishy" but idk if its true. Ive eatn my trout without soaking in saltwater and its still good to me
  17. Matt63


    I agree vacuum pack as dry as possible and will last for years. Old bay season a little olive oil and wrap in foil put on the grill about 8 to 10 minutes is another way to cook it.
    maizerage and 1more like this.
  18. I have no vacuum sealer, so I put my fillets in a ziplock with no water in the bag and fill up the sink with water, then I slowly push the bag down into the water until just the zipper part is not in the water, by doing this all the air is pushed out by the pressure of the water. Then I zip it up and it's vacuum sealed, ish.

    Like this:
    tomb, McLain and geoffoquinn like this.
  19. The butter is definitely the soggy culprit. As stated earlier it starts to burn if temp is too high and high temp is what you want for frying!
  20. 1more


    Food saver vacuume sealer is the way to go. Rolls get a little pricey but well worth it!