I went deep sea fishing a while ago with my father for his 45th birthday. We caught a bunch of striped bass, and I have never cooked with it before until now. I tried grilling it, its kindof a rubbery fish when not cooked properly from what I have found. Tried doing it on the grill in a tinfoil pouch with some herbs, white wine, etc to steam it and it still was a little rubber. So I'm assuming some sort of slow cooking or some stew type recipe might ease this texture issue. Wondering if anyone has some good recipes to share for striped bass, considering I have about 15lbs sitting in my freezer. Thank you
striped bass recipes?
ChefTalk.com Top Picks
I'm not sure what you mean by rubbery. Striped bass is a white-fleshed, non-oily, flaky fish. Any of the sea bass recipes (along with many others) works perfectly. Personally, I wouldn't grill it, but that's just me.
If I were going to do it on the grill I might try the "fish on the half-shell" technique that's become popular in South Florida. Do not scale the fish. Marinate it however you might like. Dry it. Lightly oil the skin side. On a very hot fire, cook the fish, skin side down, until cooked through, without turning the fish.
What happens, supposedly, is that the scales and skin from a hard shell due to the high heat, which is then used as the serving dish.
Striped bass is an anadromous fish (i.e., lives in both salt & fresh water) that, like salmon, has adapted well to inland lakes. So it's pretty much available to all fishermen. Plus it's being farm raised, so smaller ones are available in fish markets.
Among the many ways I've used striped bass:
Eric Ripart's signature Black Bass with Port Wine
Baked Striped Bass with Shrimp
Cold Poached Striped Bass
Deep Fried Sweet-and-Sour Striped Bass
Sea Bass Ragout
Striper/Broccholi Hot Dish
Striped Bass Kedgaree
Striped Bass with Trout Mousse in Puff Pastry
Filbert Coated Striped Bass Filets.
Well, the list goes on and on.
If you'd like recipes for any of the above, let me know.
Rubbery bass? Cooked en papillote, yet? You're doing something or several somethings wrong; overcooking frozen fish at too a high heat probably.
You and Dad may not have done a good job of freezing the fish to begin with. You may not have given the defrost sufficient time.
For nearly any recipe, if you're not going to crisp the skin over high, direct heat (no foil), remove it.
If you want to cook fish wrapped in a foil or parchment pouch, or a banana leaf wrap, or anything else for that matter, cook with low heat until the flesh is just steamed through. You want bass medium - medium well; just short of flaky (or, in your case, hard). You can cook wrapped fish in a steamer, an oven, a covered pit, or even the dying embers of a camp fire -- even, low heat is what you want.
A very basic "en papillote," is to season the fish with salt and pepper, lay it in the foil, put a generous pat of butter on top, a few capers, a couple of thin slices of lemon, a sprig of thyme, a sprinkle of chopped tarragon, splash it with white wine, seal the foil, and cook in a 325F oven (or a Dutch oven, or even buried in dying embers in a camp setting). Serve still wrapped so the diners can enjoy the steam's aroma when the packet is opened. Oh mama.
You can certainly grill striped bass. Clean it, scale it, (brine if desired) dry it thoroughly, oil it, season both sides, cook skin side down until the skin releases, turn it, cook until the top is just kissed with color, and serve.
Grilling foil wrapped fish over high, direct heat is pulling on the reins and kicking the horse at the same time -- that I wouldn't do and you shouldn't either.
I know my way around food I didn't just overcook a brick of fish, it didn't flake as much/normally as other white fish and had a chewier/rubbery texture. These were very large striped bass, 40lb range and the fisherman who filleted it for us said that the larger ones develop tougher flesh. We cooked it fresh the day, and day after it was filleted before it ever saw a freezer, I know how to thaw food. The fish wasn't "hard" it flaked. It was cooked at lower heat on a grill in a pouch. The fish wasn't really overcooked so much as it just had a different texture from cod/haddock or other white fish.
Side note: I had no idea striped bass could live in fresh water, thought they were only salt water fish
Sorry, if I've offended you by writing to the most common, rookie errors. You would be surprised by the level of expertise some people don't have. Or, maybe not. The information you provided in your last post would have been helpful earlier; but whatever the trail was like, we're on the mountaintop now.
Bass, even large bass, are firm, have a different, tighter texture than many other fish, but are not inherently "rubbery." Ideally, you want to stop cooking them just before they flake. You don't want them as rare as salmon, but less well done than cod. I'm not sure there's a generic method of cooking fish which won't work with stripers, but the devil is in the details.
Here comes the "however." However, it sounds as though you're foil pouch technique was good. Other than slightly overcooking -- and let's face it, that happens to everyone -- it's hard to put a finger on what went wrong.
How thick were your fillets? How long was the cook?
Edited by boar_d_laze - 11/21/11 at 8:49am
thought they were only salt water fish
In fact, there have likely been more caught in fresh water, the past quarter century, than in salt. Especially when we're talking 30+ pound fish.
Like salmon, stripers spawn in fresh water. It was originally discovered that they could live in fresh water full-time when they closed the dam at Santee-Cooper, trapping a population in the forming lake. The fish thrived there. This started a widespread stocking program, and something like 34 states now have fishable populations. IIRC, the last world record was from an inland lake. But don't quote me on that.
There's been a lot of pushing the idea of putting stripers in the Great Lakes. But the biologists keep fighting it, because they don't believe the lakes can support yet another top-of-the-food-chain fish. Particularly such a vorocious feeder. And some lakes, such as West Point, in Georgia, have had their programs curtailed, because the stripers were hurting another sport fish.
At the same time the inland fishery was developing, the San Francisco area was developing as Mecca for salt-water stripers. Keep in mind that for much of that period there was all but a total moratoriam on East Coast striper fishing, particularly in Chesapeake Bay, because flooding and pollution had such a negative impact on the two primary nurseries: the Susquahanna and Hudson Rivers.
It's true that smaller wild fish, those in the, say, 8-10 lb range, make the best eating. But even fish the size you caught shouldn't be rubbery.
Striped bass available in stores is farm raised, btw. I've never eaten one of those, so have no idea how they compare to wild ones.