Question:

What do I look for in pre-cut fresh fish?

Buying Pre-Cut Fresh Fish

Sometimes you may want to buy your fresh seafood precut or sliced. Two of the most popular cuts are fillets and steaks. For starters, a fillet is a cut of fresh fish that is sliced sideways. Filleting does not mean that the bones are taken out. It is simply a cut of fresh fish. A steak is a straight cut through the bones.

When buying fresh fish that is pre-cut, there are some things to look for and do to make certain of its freshness:

Flesh. Your fresh fish fillets or steaks should be a clear, bright color. There should be no dull coloring of the flesh. If there is, do not buy it. The flesh should be moist but not slimy. Sliminess is a sure indicator of aging seafood. There should be no bruising or reddening of the flesh, either.

Edges. There should be no discoloration around the edges of your fresh fish pieces. If there is, do not buy it.

Smell. Same as buying a whole fresh fish, smell the fresh fish fillet or steak that you are interested in.

Ask. Ask your butcher when the fillet was cut (if it is pre-cut when you see it). If possible, also ask when the fish was flown in and where it came from. If your butcher states he does not know, use your best judgment. Smell it for disagreeable odors. That is probably your best indicator of freshness.

Prepackaged. You take a greater chance of losing freshness when you buy prepackaged seafood. There should be a packaged date on the label, at the very least. Be sure that it is not older than two days, and be sure to smell it and look at it closely. There should be little liquid in the package.

Red Lobster offers its customers a great way to enjoy buying fresh fish fillets without all the hassle. They offer online buying and shipping of a variety of fresh fish. By buying from Red Lobster, you are assured of the highest quality, freshest seafood around. Let them choose it for you. They also have gift cards available.

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Barbara Gibson