Buying a fish whole almost always means a cheaper, fresher meal, but how do you turn it into dinner? We asked a chef to show us how to filet a fish, and we filmed it for good measure.
Art Rogers, chef-owner of Lento restaurant in Rochester, NY, would move a bit quicker with his fish if he was on the dinner line, but since we met up during relative down time (you can tell from the kitchen crew singing!), he's slowly demonstrating how to get your knife into your fish and right next to the bone, and how to remove the straggler bones and tendons from your filets.
As with Rogers' demonstration of how to slice and dice an onion like a pro, you'll want a strong, sharp knife. Rogers suggests that, even if you get your fish cleaned and scaled, ask to have the head left on, as you'll have more leverage when you're cutting. If you've got a strong enough knife, it's really just a matter of keeping as close to the main lateral bone as possible, and then cutting up and out to release a filet. Pan cooking a thin filet like this little red snapper is the way to go, and there are a few cooking suggestions near the end.
Also similar to our previous chef video: the occasionally shaky camera work and bad try-outs (digital zoom, "macro mode") of our brand-new Kodak Zi6. We apologise for the unsteady framing, but the guts of this exercise (pun intended) are pretty visible.
Thanks again to Art Rogers and the occasionally tuneful kitchen crew at Lento for letting us film and learn in their kitchen.