Available Fish Forms

Picture Identification
Fish By Edible Traits
Warm Water Fish
Cold Water Fish
Fresh Water
Caviar & Roe
Preparation Methods
Available Fish Forms
Nutritional Information
Receiving Fin Fish
Fin Fish Storage

Fish are available in a variety of forms. The form in which it is purchased will depend on its intended use and the skill of the kitchen staff.

The forms include:
Round  (whole) fish are fish as they come from the water.
Drawn  fish are whole fish which have been dressed. They have been cleaned, the gills and intestines removed. This is termed gutted.
Roast is a large chunk or tail section of a large, fin fish.
Steak  is a crosscut section of a large fish cut three-quarters of an inch to one and one-half inch. Depending on the size of the fish, it may be whole, including the backbone or cut in half or quarters with the backbone removed.
Loin,  as discussed earlier, is a longitudinal cut from the fish, such as tuna or swordfish.
Fillet  is a side of the fish removed from the central vertebrae (backbone). Fillets may come with or without skin.
Butterfly Fillet  is two fillets held together by the belly or back skin of the fish.
Escallops . are diagonal slices 3/8" thick, cut from a large fillet

While it is true that the majority of commercial food operations purchase fish processed in some form, there are those which still buy round or drawn fish. There are four reasons for this:

1. The operation finds it is less expensive to train their personnel than to pay the purveyor for cutting the fish.
2.  The location of the operation may be in an area where the fish can be picked up from the boats daily.
3.  The operation needs the fish bones for stock.
4.  The operation serves the fish in a manner which requires whole fish or special presentations.

Of course, volume and availability often dictate what forms are used, but all the benefits and determinants should be weighed carefully.


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