Spring 2014 – Week 3: Sea Mullet
Old man winter wasn’t quite done with us yet…another cold snap? Even so, the signs of spring are here – Daffodils, Irises, Azaleas and Mullet. Mullet? Yes Ma’am. On the coast one of the sure signs of spring are larger schools of mullet. All locations will receive Sea Mullet in their share. In addition to Sea Mullet, we will have Black Sea Bass, Vermilion Snapper, Yellowfin Tuna, and Wahoo in shares across different locations. More on these species later as they deserve their own post.
Sea Mullet Recipes
Sea mullet are another Atlantic catch that can go unnoticed by many but eagerly welcomed on dinner plates in Eastern North Carolina. When looking for recipes, it is important to consider the many different names people give the same fish. Here in North Carolina we call them sea mullet. In other places they will go by “Whiting” and in other places “Kingfish”. If you are doing your own search, mix it up and search for all three terms.
We recommend frying your mullet. Check out this quick tutorial on frying fish perfectly. You can also bread the fish in light cornmeal to have a true classic southern fried fish sandwich!
If you want to bake your Mullet, check out our baked Mullet recipes.
In either event, check out some preparation tips below before starting to cook.
Still Time to Sign Up!
If you are not a shareholder with Core Sound in the Triangle or in Boone, this is what you could be eating this weekend! You can still sign up for the remainder of the season, or check out our weekly online custom order options at this link:
Have a great weekend! And check out these tips on preparing fish.
How to Prepare Full Flavored Fish
Here are some tips to use when you might think a fish is strong like the Croaker last week. When it comes to trying out a wide variety of fish, you may find some that are “fishy” for your tastes. The trick is that this level of flavor is different for everybody. It will depend on your personal taste. Our fillets are as fresh as you can get them so any fish aroma is due to the nature of the species. If you smell your share and think it is strong for you, here are some things you can do:
1. Soak the fish in a solution of water, vinegar, and salt to cover the fish. For 1 quart of water, use 2 tbps of vinegar and 1 tbps of salt. Let the fish soak in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
2. Or, soak the fish in milk. Milk can also help pull out some of the stronger flavor. You can soak them for an hour, or even overnight. Cover the fish with milk and add any herbs as well: dill, rosemary, garlic.
3. Use a method of cooking like frying, or baking with a heavy sauce that can help the flavor along. A stronger fish can be great in a homemade fried fish sandwich.
How to De-Bone Fillets
When you get a fillet with bones, you should always start by taking the bones out.
If it is a smaller fillet with rib cage bones: like the Croaker, simply take a sharp knife and cut out the bones saving as much fish as possible. Discard the bones. Sometimes you will also have a small fin. Cut that off as well. You know have a boneless fillet that you can cook.
If it is a thicker steak: like the common Salmon, you use tweezers. Strong tweezers, especially those with a scissor grip, are essential in the kitchen. They even make fish tweezers specific to the job. You can take a few minutes to pull out the bones and have your fish ready to go. There are a number of videos about de-boning fillets on YouTube.
“Are there bones in it?” is a common question non-fish eaters ask. The answer is always “there could be”. You do your best to get them out, but finding a bone or two in a fillet should be expected and not a surprise. It is a good idea to remind folks of this every time you serve fish. You can also make a game of it, the same way many do with finding the buckshot in wild shot game hen: “Whoever finds the first bone, or biggest bone, first doesn’t have to do the dishes.”