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Freezing Fish - On the skin or off??

Old 02-15-2011, 09:06 PM
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Default Freezing Fish - On the skin or off??

Does fish tend to last longer/stay fresher if you keep the skin on when you freeze? I have had several people tell me that it helps to protect the meat? I usually vacuum seal before i freeze. Any opinions?
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Old 02-15-2011, 11:15 PM
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We freeze a lot of fish for personal consumption and always with the skin off and portioned for eating.

But then again it doesn't stay in the freezer very long as we eat a lot of it too!

It probably depends somewhat on the species as some freeze better than others, but generally we always fillet, skin and portion each piece before freezing.
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Old 02-16-2011, 04:24 AM
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don't freeze it, it will never be the same after!!

BUT, if you have to: skin off, don't rinse with water, wrap in paper towel, and vaccum seal.
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Old 02-16-2011, 04:27 AM
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I've always filleted everything and frozen the fillets in water. We too eat a lot of fish so going bad has never been an issue. I put the fillets in a ziplock bag, overfill the bag with water and squeeze the air out while sealing the bag. I can't imagine leaving skin on would be of any benefit.
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Old 02-16-2011, 05:04 AM
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i use the ziploc vacuum bags with the hand pump.if i am going to freeze a long time, i place the vacuum bag with the fish in it, in another freezer bag filled with water.skin off.
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Old 02-16-2011, 06:37 AM
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You can always take the skin off after thawing. But, we do it either way depending on how we're going to cook it. If we're going to pan-fry, the fillet stays together better with the skin on. For deep-fried fish or fish stew we cook it without the skin. We freeze it in ziplock bags with water. We'll sometimes keep it in the freezer for 10 months. It's not the same as fresh fish but there's no noticeable deterioration. Now, this applies mostly to cod since it's the only fish we catch in abundance. Not sure about other species.
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Old 02-16-2011, 07:19 AM
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For fin-fish...seabass, snapper, beeliners, mangos, ect.....IF I'm gonna freeze some....I like to gut the fish and cut off his head.....then rinse the gutted fish in a saltwater /ice slush.....then freeze it whole with a vacuum sealer. and stack in your freezer.

Then it's just a matter of picking out the fish you want to eat and thaw and prepare as normal....they taste like you just caught 'em if you don't water down the flesh with fresh water.....always try to use salt water. I learned that from a captain at the keys, he would reach over and scoop up a couple of five gallon buckets of salt water and put the lids on, and take it back just for cleaning and freezing the fish we caught.

Now for that mess of bluegills and specks, it's the same, only use fresh water.

Plus the skin left on will protect the meat from getting freezer burned.


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Old 02-16-2011, 07:27 AM
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Skin on protects meat from freezer burn and drying out. Plus helps identify the fish in the freezer.
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Old 02-16-2011, 08:03 AM
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I like to cook whole red snapper on the grill. Gut 'em, gill 'em, and vacuum pack 'em scales and all. I take the scales off after thawing, before cooking. They hold up better in the freezer that way. Grouper and other large fish get filleted and vacuum packed, usually no skin, but each pack dated and labeled with a Sharpie before being put in the freezer.
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:20 AM
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Fish I cook with the scales on, I obviously freeze with scales on. Otherwise not.
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:32 AM
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I fillet and remove skin from most all the fish I keep. I like freezing in water.
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