Prepare and Bake a Freshly Caught Fish
This past holiday weekend my parents spent time in Big Bear, California enjoying the lake and family. On Memorial Day they set out on the lake hoping to catch some dinner. Well anyone who has fished before knows that sometimes you can spend hours and get nothing. Luckily my dad caught a trout and my mom cooked it up for dinner. The following is my moms directions on how to prepare and bake a fish.
(My mom took this photo in her phone so forgive the finger!)
What you need:
- sharp knife and cutting board
- 3 sheets of newspaper
- baking pan
- 2 sheets of foil
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 2 tablespoons butter, divided
Spread out three sheets of newspaper on a flat surface such as a counter. Measure fish for bragging rights with your buddies. (You may add a few inches if necessary)
With a sharp knife slice through the skin on the bottom of the fish from the rear fin to the gills.
Remove internal organs, you may need to cut some of the organs from the backbone. Rinse fish again. Roll up first layer of newspaper and discard.
Place trout on remaining newspaper. Open the fish and your thumb along the interior backbone to remove any remaining organs down to the meat. Rinse fish again, roll up newspaper with remaining organs and discard.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking pan with one sheet of foil. Place fish on its side in the baking pan. Sprinkle inside lightly with garlic powder and basil and insert butter. Cover loosely with remaining sheet of foil.
Bake 10-15 minutes depending on the size of the fish. A larger fish may need an extra 5 minutes. The fish is done when the meat is firm and flakes easily with a fork.
Peel skin off, remove meat leaving the bone structure, turn over and repeat.
I remember when we were kids on family camping trips my dad would go fishing. One year he caught a few fish and followed this same process. It looks pretty gross digging out the organs, but the result is pretty tasty. Knowing you caught your own food also makes it taste better.