Can You Eat That?

It is a sad fact that many of the fish we catch are not the ones featured in fish recipe books or appear regularly in high street fishmongers. The good news is that almost every fish in UK waters is edible (although sand eel is edible but disgusting). Tope and shad are protected and must be returned. Please do not take undersized fish, there are minimum size limits enforced by the Sussex Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority .  A list is on the Local Information page. If possible return females particularly if spawning. The following table gives a guide to what recipes to use for all the fish species regularly caught in East Solent waters.

Species Cooking Notes Recipes and Links
Bass Smaller fish cook whole, 3-4lb fish use half or quarter fillets. Return fish over 7lb as they are better for breeding than eating

Grill, shallow fry, BBQ, bake. Bass and bream recipes are interchangeable

Bass with Garlic, Chilli and Thyme

Bass Tray Grill

Bream When plentiful in the breeding season take only males.

Grill, BBQ or bake. Bass and bream recipes are interchangeable

Baked Bream

Bass Tray Grill

Fish Tacos

Brill Treat as plaice Grill, fry. Bake only if large
Cod Do you need notes??? Our fishy staple. Anything goes.

Balti Fried Fish

Crispy Cod

Not Just Any Old Fish Kebabs

Fish Chowder to Impress

Five Thousand Fish

Breaded Whiting with Mashy Peas

Fish Tacos

Posh Fish & Chips

Conger Eel Slow growing so better to return. Very, very bony, but firm white meat. So bony best to cut up and use in fish pies and fishcakes
Cuttlefish Most recipes based on quick frying as longer cooking makes them tough Similar recipes to squid
Dab Treat as plaice

Fry

Breaded Whiting with Mashy Peas

Fish Tacos

Posh Fish & Chips

Dogfish Gut, skin and freeze for at least two weeks before cooking to ensure the ammonia taint is removed

Deep fry, fishcakes, curries, pie filling, smoke

Dogfish Recipes

Fish Tacos

Eel (silver or common) The eel population has crashed by 90% so return if possible. Smoke, stew
Flounder

Can have a muddy taint if caught in estuaries and harbours. Soak in milk overnight. Treat as plaice

Fry, grill

Breaded Whiting with Mashy Peas

Fish Tacos

Posh Fish & Chips

Garfish Has green bones, even when cooked which looks odd but helps you spot them. Treat as mackerel (but not as oily)

Grill, smoke

Mackerel “Blackened Fish”

Smoked Mackerel Pate

Gurnard Firm white flesh. Excellent eating Bake, fry, grill
Herring Make sure it is not a shad. Fry, grill, souse (pickle)
Mackerel Needs no comment

Grill, smoke, BBQ

Mackerel “Blackened Fish”

Smoked Mackerel Pate

Gravad Max (cured mackerel)

Mackerel Brunch

Spiced Mackerel

Mackerel Donburi

Swedish Mackerel Lunch

Mullet Treat as bass. Can be muddy if caught in estuaries and harbours.

Bake, fry, grill

Bass with Garlic, Chilli and Thyme

Bass Tray Grill

Fish Tacos

Plaice Needs no comment

Fry, grill, bake larger ones

Fritto Misto Di Mare

Breaded Whiting with Mashy Peas

Posh Fish & Chips

Pollack Treat as cod

Balti Fried Fish

Crispy Cod

Not Just Any Old Fish Kebabs

Fish Chowder to Impress

Five Thousand Fish

Breaded Whiting with Mashy Peas

Fish Tacos

Posh Fish & Chips

Pouting Larger ones are excellent. Treat as cod

Balti Fried Fish

Crispy Cod

Not Just Any Old Fish Kebabs

Fish Chowder to Impress

Five Thousand Fish

Fish Tacos

Thai fish cakes

Rays (all) Skin wings first. Some people including me freeze before eating to avoid any ammonia taint

Shallow fry, deep fry, poach

Ray Wings and Cream

Rockling Firm white flesh. Treat as cod

Balti Fried Fish

Crispy Cod

Not Just Any Old Fish Kebabs

Fish Chowder to Impress

Five Thousand Fish

Fish Tacos

Posh Fish & Chips

Scad (Horse Mackerel) Bony, similar to mackerel but not as oily. Treat as mackerel

Grill, BBQ

Simple Scad

Mackerel “Blackened Fish”

Smelt Can be caught in a net in harbours. Scale, and shallow fry like sprats Fry
Smoothhound Treat as dogfish

Deep fry, fishcakes, curries, pie filling, smoke

Dogfish Recipes

Sole One of the few fish that is better after a few days on ice. Keep 4-5 days before eating. Cook as plaice. Fry, grill
Sprat Can be caught in nets in winter Fry
Squid Can be caught on feathers and jigs in summer. Either cook very fast (2-3 mins) or very slow (2 hours), anything in between results in a rubber meal.

Deep or shallow fry

Eat Your Bait

Trigger Fish Needs to be skinned. Very good eating, white flesh. Treat as bass/bream

Fry, grill, bake

Baked Bream

Bass with Garlic, Chilli and Thyme

Bass Tray Grill

Fish Tacos

Turbot Treat as plaice Fry, grill, bake larger ones
Weever Avoid the sting but the rest is good eating Add to fish stews
Whiting Treat as cod

Balti Fried Fish

Crispy Cod

Not Just Any Old Fish Kebabs

Fish Chowder to Impress

Five Thousand Fish

Breaded Whiting with Mashy Peas

Fish Tacos

Posh Fish & Chips

Wrasse Slow growing so best to return. White flesh, little taste. Needs skinning not scaling Bulk up pies, fishcakes, stews, curries

[amazon_link asins=’0747595313,1849908451,0563493151′ template=’ProductGrid’ store=’boatangling-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=’116d2d6d-09ce-11e7-b47c-75545ac447d4′]