The Most Common Questions:
1. How to know whether seafood is ready?
A. Actually, fish is ready when meat starts separating. You can check it by sticking a sharp knife point to the fish and carefully pulling its skin apart. The edges shouldn’t be transparent and the center with meat starting to flake should be see-through. Wait for three or four minutes letting fish stand. As a fact, it is recommended to cook fish until its internal temperature reaches 63 °C (145 °F). If you can’t measure the temperature, follow the rule of ten-minute cooking. Measure the fish species where it is the biggest and prepare it for ten minutes per 3 cm (1 inch). If you grill, broil or sauté the fish, turn it in the middle of the cooking process. If you have wrapped the fish in foil or added some sauce, add five minutes to the cooking time. Also cook more time if frozen seafood hasn’t been defrosted enough. Follow the special instruction on how to make frozen seafood.
2. What about the storage time of frozen fish?
A. You can keep whitefish frozen at 0 °C (32 °F) for 6 months. As for salmon and coalfish, keep them in the freezer for 3 months, as they are rich in fat. Alaska in-shell crab can be kept in such a way for 10 months.
3. What about the storage time of fresh and thawed seafood?
A. It is better to use thawed and fresh fish on the same date when you have bought it. But you can keep it for a few days in the fridge if required. When buying seafood always look for the date at the label and focus on it.
4. How much seafood to buy?
Round or whole fish: 3/4 to 450 g per individual
Clean or dressed fish: 1/2 to 350 g per individual
Fish steak and fillet: 1/4 to 1/2 225 g per individual
Snow and king shelled crab: 170 to 230 g per individual
Dungeness crab: cooked crab weighing almost 1 360 g has app. 340 g of meat.
Canned salmon: 85-100 g can per individual, or a 200 g can for two.
5.I have noticed some crystals resembling glass in my canned salmon. What are these crystals? Is it safe to eat this fish?
A. These crystals are struvite. When fish is canned, struvite can naturally occur. They are not dangerous and, according to the FDA, it is absolutely safe to eat such canned fish.
Sturvite is produced when particular natural particles of seafood are crystallized mainly because crystals are usually formed from sugar in can preservatives and syrups. After fish is sterilized in cans, multiple natural constituents, that are mineral elements ensured by seawaters where fish inhabit, form crystals. While fish and shellfish species live, their health depends on these elements. When they are prepared, the elements “gather” in a way that struvite often occur.
6. I have a dented can of salmon. Can I consume this salmon?
A. In fact, it is better not to buy dented cans. If you have bought this, you can consume seafood from such can until there are no any leakages and the seal is not damaged. Dispose of cans with leakages especially if they are dented or, on the contrary, swollen immediately.
7. Can I freeze seafood at home?
A. If you want to always have seafood in your refrigerator, it is better to purchase commercially frozen fish. Multiple home refrigerators and freezers can’t reach and keep the temperature that is required for freezing fish or shellfish. If you have caught fish yourself and are not going to cook fresh fish in the nearest future, follow this instruction to freeze seafood:
Freeze only fresh fish. If seafood have been already frozen and then defrosted, never freeze it again.
Fish should be rinsed with water and dried.
Seafood should be wrapped in foil or special freezing paper or placed in a plastic container or bag. Seafood to be frozen can also be packed in a home vacuum packing machine.
The shelf life of fish frozen at home is almost half the shelf life of seafood commercially frozen. Pay attention to the list of shelf life of seafood commercially frozen and divide it by 2.
8. How to process or cook remaining seafood? How much time to keep it?
A. You can add remaining seafood to sandwiches, salads, etc. If some fish is left after cooking, keep in the fridge or freeze it a couple of hours later. Keep all remaining seafood in an empty covered container. No matter whether fish is kept in the freezer or the fridge, the shelf life is the same as fish is not cooked.
9. My refrigerator or freezer is broken and some seafood is left. Is it safe to eat this?
A. if your freezer or refrigerator is broken, you can keep the door shut as longer as possible to extend the storage time a little. Fish can be stored for 4-6 hours but everything depends on the external temperature. Place briquette ice into the fridge extending the time this way. If your freezer is full of some products, it also can help keeping fish frozen for 2 days.
You can freeze seafood again if it still contains ice crystals but the textures won’t be as good as it was before. If frozen fish is defrosted or is kept at the temperature of 0-5 °C (40 °F) for 2 hours, throw it away immediately.