How do I prepare a whole fish that I buy from the market for dinner?

I buy seafood from a local market and they have many kinds of fish for sale, the whole darn thing right there on ice. How do I get it from there to a dinner ready version? Cut the head off? The tail? What about the insides? And the skin and bones?

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6 Responses to “How do I prepare a whole fish that I buy from the market for dinner?”

  1. pinkpixie June 3, 2013 at 12:34 pm #

    Hopefully the fish has been gutted, or you’re in for trouble. If you’ve never filleted a fish before, it can easily become a horrible looking piece of meat. Sometimes when you buy a whole fish, you can ask them to fillet it for you. I personally don’t like to deal with the skin on fish, because of the scales, having to descale the thing. ( I always end up with scales EVERYWHERE)
    But if you are determined to cook a whole fish, just stuff the cavity with fresh parsley, lemon, salt, pepper and throw it on the grill until its done. But like I said, you’ll still have to deal with the skin issue.

  2. Sharky June 3, 2013 at 1:11 pm #

    1) you spice it up. Add pepper, salt , and whatever other flavor you want to put on your fish,
    2) Wrap it up in foil
    3) set your Oven at 350 degrees
    4) put the fish inside 20 minutes more or less
    5) take your fish out make sure is well cooked.
    6) now you can eat it

  3. Melissss June 3, 2013 at 1:15 pm #

    Try looking it up on She showed how to do this a few weeks ago on her show, I’m sure somewhere on there will tell you how to do this.

  4. sumona June 3, 2013 at 2:03 pm #

    Hey! see the whole fish receipe from my side.

    1 whole fish
    1 small sized Onion
    1 small sized Tomato
    2 Green chilli
    2 tbsps Oil
    Salt to taste
    1 tbsp Malt vinegar

    For paste:
    2 inch piece Ginger
    15 cloves Garlic
    2 tsps Cumin seeds
    2 tbsps Coriander seeds
    6 Red chilli whole
    1/2 cup Coconut (scraped)
    1 lemon sized ball Tamarind (seedless)

    Clean, wash and cut each fish into five to six pieces (if u want to piece). Peel, wash and chop onions. Wash and chop tomatoes. Remove stems, wash and slit green chillies and further cut into half. Peel, wash and roughly chop ginger and garlic for the paste. Dry roast cumin seeds, coriander seeds and whole red chillies. Make a fine paste of all the roasted spices along with scraped coconut, ginger, garlic and tamarind. Heat oil in a pan. Add chopped onions and sauté till golden brown. Add green chillies and chopped tomatoes. Cook on medium heat for three minutes. Stir constantly. Add the paste and one and a half cups of water. Bring to a boil and then add fish pieces and salt. Cook on low heat for about five minutes or till fish is just done. Stir in vinegar and serve hot with steamed rice.

  5. hvn_fun2 June 3, 2013 at 2:11 pm #

    You didn’t mention what kind of fish or the size. Is the fish gutted and scaled? If not, your fish monger should be able to do that for you in a hurry, usually at no extra charge. Many cultures think the eyes are the best part of the fish, but I’ll pass on that!

    Whole fish is a lovely presentation. A very simple method for most fish is to rub with olive oil (does not need to be extra virgin) and course salt (kosher or sea salt is great) inside and out. Place thin slices of lemon, garlic and whole herbs of your choice in cavity. Bake, broil or grill until flesh is opaque and flakes easily. Please do not overcook. Cooking time will depend not only on the size, but also the kind of fish. Firm fleshed fish takes a bit longer.
    If serving whole fish, do take out the pin bones with needle nose pliers prior to cooking, (run your fingers down and you can feel them.) Larger bones are ok, and even add flavor. The flesh, when cooked will easily pull away from the bones, and the skin will peel off easily as well.

    Good Luck

  6. genericmamaw June 3, 2013 at 3:07 pm #

    you can fillet the fish
    and cook it

    you can cook the whole fish by steaming with some leeks, garlic, soy sauce, ginger

    by grilling with tomatoes, onions, garlic inside the fish

    by frying the whole thing! and make a good sauce for dipping!

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