How easy is it to prepare Raw Salmon?
Well for me it was time to improve.
After years of enjoying sushi and also rolling my own I have changed my fish preparation.
For years I followed a technique of barely thawing my frozen fish and slicing it when it was still fairly firm. This was an ok way to go because I was able to get the thickness of the sashimi right and was able to slice it without shredding the meat. Waiting for it to soften and using a non scalloped dry knife created a mess with my fish so I stuck to the fairly frozen slicing technique.
A couple of observations from my previous technique. The outside of the salmon would thaw slightly and I would mush the meat on the extremities as I held it. This necessitated trimming. Additional the knife could not differentiate between frozen fish and bone therefore depositing tiny bits of bone in my sashimi pieces. These pieces were allowed to finish thawing , then trimmed and were used in the evening sushi meal.
After years of doing this I felt that the fish was somewhat soft, I was tired of squishing the fish (and having to trim this off) and that the flavour and texture wasn’t up to snuff. BUT I always enjoyed day old sashimi. The penny dropped. The meat has to dry out.
My new technique is to defrost the salmon a day or 2 before you intend to eat the fish. After thawing, skin the fillet, wrap in paper towel , zip lock bag the fish and put it in the refrigerator. Replace the moisture soaked paper towel a few times. After each change you will see the fish dry out and gain a wonderful workable texture. I have had the fish left in my fridge for up to 4 or 5 days before it starts to smell fishy. The fish losses its water weight , firms up and is very workable.
As simple as this technique is, it has made all the difference in world to the texture, flavour of the fish and the workability of the flesh.
1. A sharp scalloped moist blade is perfect for this job.
2. The eating of raw fish is not recommended by all authorities.
3. I have been told that fish has to be frozen solid for a minimum of 3 days to kill the parasites that may be in the fish flesh.
4. I have been eating raw salmon for years without health issues