Tuesday, November 07, 2006

How to De-Bone a Raw Trout

Once again, I spent the afternoon on Goldwater Lake fishing with my nephew. As has been the case since Fall began, we had no problem catching our limit in a short time period. We've been fishing 1-2 times a week since Fall began ... and needless to say, we're catching a LOT of trout!

But as much as we both enjoy fishing - neither one of us likes to eat fish! Personally, I think a lot of my problems have to do with the bones. I remember eating a lot of fish as a kid on camping trips and how the bones would get stuck in my throat! The bones always bothered me - even if only psychologically.

Luckily for me, I have a lot of family members who are always happy to eat all the trout I can catch. But even so, I've heard others complain about the bones when eating trout.

My solution has always been to cut off the tail (and head) before cooking. I've discovered that having the tail gone make it much easier to peel the bones away in tact after the trout is cooked. There might still be the odd bone or two, but not near as many.

But today, I was surfing the web, and came across a site that gave instructions for removing the bones BEFORE the trout was cooked! This intrigued me (and sadly, I had just finished cleaning tonight's catch when I found the site). But I wanted share the information in case others wanted to try it. I'd be really interested in hearing how it worked out. I will of course, have to remember to try it on my next catch.

I've copied and pasted the instructions below for removing the bones from a raw trout. I personally prefer method "A".

Method A
Place the trout on a board with the belly facing you. Using a sharp fish-filleting knife, very carefully cut between the top layer of bones and the flesh. Continue working towards the spine. When you reach this point, turn the fish over and repeat the process. Once the bone is loose, using a pair of scissors, cut the spine loose both at the tail and head end. You now have a bone-free trout, that may be cooked. This same method may be used for making gravlax, simply cut off the head and tail.

Method B
To de-bone this way, lay the fish with its back towards you. Using a sharp fish-filleting knife, make a clean cut just above the bone all the way along the back. Using firm short stokes, loosen the bone. Now turn the fish over and remove the bone from the other side. Now stand the fish on its belly and use a pair of scissors, cut the bone loose, head and tail. The fish can now be stuffed with a mousse type filling. If you find this method easier, it may also be used for filleting.

Ever cooked trout over a campfire? My favorite trout recipe was shared with me by my great grandfather. It can be used on a BBQ grill too.

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