How to Filet Fish

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 16,345
    Chef Jim Davis from Harris Teeter shows us how to fillet fish.

    Jim Davis: Hi, Chef Jim Davis here for Harris Teeter. I am going to show you now how to fillet your fish. This particular one happened to be a cod and the way you can tell this is a fresh one, when I picked it up at the market this morning, is the nice shiny eyes; that's a good indicator that the fish is still fresh. You don't want one that the eyes have gotten cloudy or if it smells bad. It should smell like the sea, it shouldn't smell like fish.

    What we are going to do is we are going to remove the top fillet from this gentleman. We are going to start by cutting up behind this fin, and then up behind the skull, down to the backbone, okay. And then we're going to take our sharp knife, this takes a sharp knife, we can run our knife right along the backbone, see where I am cutting up, right along the backbone, there. And now what I want to do is I want to keep my knife down against the bones but not so much that I am going to cut them of so, we want to just kind of lay the knife against the bone a little bit then we will turn the rascal around and starting back at the tail, simply grab our knife, lay the knife against the bones, yet to cut around this bony cartilage up in the front of the fish. We will remove that, after we get him out of here. And that is a perfect cod fillet, and there is the bone, so we didn't leave too much on him. Now we just take this and cut off this bony cartilage up here. This fellow happens to have some pin bones in him, so we are going to take a little pair of tweezer knives, a little pair of tweezers or utility pliers and just pull that rascal down. And you can run your fingers along and feel where they are. Haven't got many in this one, we did a pretty good job of cutting him up so, you don't have to worry about them. That's how you remove the pin bones.

    Now if we want to then remove our fillet from the skin, depending on how you are going to cook this guy, you may want to leave the skin on or take the skin off. If we want to take the skin off, we simply cut down to the skin that's a tail, and then working our knife just like this, pulling on the skin, so we are pulling off the skin. That little bit of silver is fine. And there is our boneless, skinless cod fillet.