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How to fillet a round fish

by Great British Chefs8 December 2014

How to fillet a round fish

Round fish include the ever-popular cod, haddock, sea bass and mackerel to name but a few. The size of knife you will need depends on the size of the fish – the bigger the fish, the longer the blade required. A round fish will produce two fillets which will serve 1 or 2 people depending on the size of the fish.

Before you begin, make sure that your fish has been scaled and gutted. Ask your fishmonger to do this for you if you would prefer not to clean up – scaling fish is a messy business.


Remove the head and tail
Hold the fish firmly on a chopping board and run the knife along the backbone from head to tail
Keeping as close to the bone as possible, remove the fillet with a stroking motion continuing until you reach the other side of the fish
Repeat the process on the other side


When you have mastered this technique, why not have a go at Robert Thompson's steamed fillet of sea bream with nage of Cornish oysters, tomatoes and cucumber and herb gnocchi or Simon Hulstone's pan-fried sea bass, butter spinach, clams, poached cod cheeks and fish sauce.

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