Our helpful guideline is the 10 – minute rule for cooking fish. Apply in when baking, broiling, grilling, steaming and poaching fish fillets or steaks. Practice makes perfect and cooking fish properly is all in the timing. Here’s how to use the 10 – minute rule
(note that all cooking times are after fish is thawed, patted dry and brushed or sprayed with olive or canola oil) :
- Measure the seafood product at it’s thickest point. If the fish is stuffed or rolled, measure it after stuffing or rolling.
- At 450ºF bake for 10 minutes per inch thickness of the fish, turning the fish halfway through the cooking time. For example, a 1 inch fish steak should be cooked 5 minutes on each side for a total of 10 minutes. Pieces of fish less than half an inch thick do not have to be turned over.
- Add 5 minutes to the total cooking time if you are cooking the fish in foil or if the fish is cooked in a sauce.
Pan Searing (our favorite): Spray a metal handled sauté of chef’s pan with oil. Oil fish and season. Bring the oiled pan up to medium high heat and sear fish 45 seconds on each side. Immediately place entire pan and fish in preheated 450º oven. Bake for 8 – 10 minutes. Carefully remove hot pan from oven and serve fish.
Baking: Whole fish, whole stuffed fish, fillets, stuffed fillets, steaks and chunks of fish may be baked. Use pieces of similar size for even cooking. It’s best to bake fish in a preheated 450º oven following the 10-minute rule; bake uncovered, basting if desired.
Broiling: Place fish, 1 inch thick or less, 2 to 4 inches from the heat source. Place thicker pieces 5 to 6 inches away. Baste frequently with an oil-based marinade. Using the 10 minute rule, cook on one side for half the total cooking time, basting once or twice, then turn the fish over to continue broiling and basting.
Grilling: This technique lends itself well to thick fish such as salmon, halibut, sea bass, mahi, swordfish and tuna steaks. Preheat and outdoor gas or electric grill. If using a barbecue grill, start the fire about 30 minutes before cooking. Let it burn until white-hot then spread the coals out in a single layer. Adjust the grill height to 4 to 6 inches above the heat. To grill fish, a moderately hot fire is always best. Always start with a well-oiled cooking grid to prevent the delicate skin of the fish from sticking. Also brush fish fillets with oil before seasoning. Frequently baste steaks and filets while grilling to prevent them from drying. Marinating fish an hour before grilling keeps it moist. Apply the 10 minute rule for proper doneness.