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Old 01-15-2019, 07:00 AM
DummyGladHands DummyGladHands is offline
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I want to get a thin crust on skinless cod filets.

Is cod the wrong fish? I can do it on sea bass, but who can afford that all the time?? How do restaurants do it?
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Old 01-15-2019, 07:14 AM
KneadToKnow KneadToKnow is offline
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When you say "thin crust," do you mean like a beer batter crust, or like a tempura crust?
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Old 01-15-2019, 07:55 AM
DummyGladHands DummyGladHands is offline
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Just a thin "cooked" crust, no breading or anything
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Old 01-15-2019, 08:19 AM
SanVito SanVito is offline
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Remove the fish from the fridge 15 minutes before you cook it, so it gets to room temperature. Pat the fillet dry, season and fry in a very hot pan with sizzling hot oil (not olive - it doesn't get hot enough. Use sunflower or vegetable instead). You can press the fish down into contact with the oil with a spatula to enhance the crusting.

reduce the heat when the crust forms

You could also try dusting the fish with flour.

Last edited by SanVito; 01-15-2019 at 08:20 AM.
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Old 01-15-2019, 08:56 AM
DummyGladHands DummyGladHands is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SanVito View Post
Remove the fish from the fridge 15 minutes before you cook it, so it gets to room temperature. Pat the fillet dry, season and fry in a very hot pan with sizzling hot oil (not olive - it doesn't get hot enough. Use sunflower or vegetable instead). You can press the fish down into contact with the oil with a spatula to enhance the crusting.

reduce the heat when the crust forms

You could also try dusting the fish with flour.
Tried that, it stuck and fell apart
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Old 01-15-2019, 09:11 AM
madmonk28 madmonk28 is offline
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I'm not that familiar with cod, is it firm enough to be prepared that way?
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Old 01-15-2019, 09:19 AM
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voltaire voltaire is offline
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Might try cooking it in an air fryer?
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Old 01-15-2019, 10:36 AM
Fear Itself Fear Itself is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DummyGladHands View Post
Is cod the wrong fish?
Yes. Cod is too flakey, it needs some kind of batter or bound breading to hold it together.
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Old 01-15-2019, 10:52 AM
SanVito SanVito is offline
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Originally Posted by DummyGladHands View Post
Tried that, it stuck and fell apart
Sounds to me like your fish was not fresh enough. Cod is an excellent fish for pan frying, one of the best. Although skin on will be far more successful. And tastier.

Last edited by SanVito; 01-15-2019 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 01-15-2019, 11:09 AM
pulykamell pulykamell is offline
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Originally Posted by SanVito View Post
Sounds to me like your fish was not fresh enough. Cod is an excellent fish for pan frying, one of the best. Although skin on will be far more successful. And tastier.
Definitely better skin-on, but also agree with the rest. The fish will stick to the pan if you try flipping it too early, as well, or if the pan isn't hot enough to begin with. Could that possibly be a source of the problem? (Though, to be honest, I'm not entirely sure what the "thin skin" is supposed to be. Like a sear of some sort? You also have to make sure the fish itself is patted dry. And if you're cooking cod that has sodium tripolyphosphate in it [used to retain moisture], you're not going to get a good sear, anyway.)

Last edited by pulykamell; 01-15-2019 at 11:09 AM.
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Old 01-15-2019, 11:51 AM
Figaro Figaro is offline
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You can also try a light dusting of rice flour on the fish. It won't create a batter or impart any noticeable flavor, but it will brown nicely and get crispy.
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Old 01-15-2019, 01:27 PM
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Dip it in a thick miso first. Cod isn't oily enough to produce its own fond.
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Old 01-15-2019, 03:56 PM
teela brown teela brown is offline
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Yes. Cod is too flakey, it needs some kind of batter or bound breading to hold it together.
This is correct. Cod is delicate and flaky and isn't a good candidate for pan-searing without any breading. And even breaded or battered it still wants to fall apart.

A firmer, more robust fish (like halibut or salmon) will stand up to searing, and you can get a good brown crisp crust by sprinkling the tiniest amount of sugar over the fleshy part of the fish, then searing it sugar-side down. The sugar will caramelize and crisp and lose most of its sweetness. I learned this on America's Test Kitchen.

Yum, salmon seared to about medium-rare with a crisp brown crust is the best.
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Old 01-16-2019, 04:11 AM
SanVito SanVito is offline
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Originally Posted by teela brown View Post
This is correct. Cod is delicate and flaky and isn't a good candidate for pan-searing without any breading. And even breaded or battered it still wants to fall apart.

A firmer, more robust fish (like halibut or salmon) will stand up to searing, and you can get a good brown crisp crust by sprinkling the tiniest amount of sugar over the fleshy part of the fish, then searing it sugar-side down. The sugar will caramelize and crisp and lose most of its sweetness. I learned this on America's Test Kitchen.

Yum, salmon seared to about medium-rare with a crisp brown crust is the best.
Seriously, you need to source better quality, fresher cod. It can be beautiful pan seared.
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