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Turbot

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What is the best way to prepare Turbot fillets? I pan fried some and they crumbled. Is it good only for fish tacos?

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  1. Turbot can be very tempramental. That's why I usually steam it. It only takes three or four minutes, and the fish remains cohesive and moist. It's fairly traditional to steam turbot with Asian ingredients such as lemngrass. Just google "steamed turbot" and I'm sure you'll find tons of good recipes.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Bostonbob3

      Thanks to you Bostonbob3!

    2. I like the flavor of turbot, but not the texture. It seems
      mealy. Is that how it's supposed to be?

      1. Turbot turns to mush if it's overcooked (and it doesn't take much to overcook it). That's why steaming works so well; it's done in a matter of a few minutes without direct heat affecting the flesh. Gentle poaching is also a good method. And though it seems counter-intuitive, a very quick broil can also work (but requires some trial and error; believe me.:))

        1. Actually, turbot is a wonderful fish and quite expensive to be making tacos out of it. It is classically poached or more often roasted whole, filetted at the table and served with Beurre Blanc. It is delicious.

          1. When I can get one (and it's been quite some time), I roast it whole. This is one of my all-time favorite fish!

            3 Replies
            1. re: pikawicca

              What do you roast it with? I always like Asian ingredients (lemongrass, ginger, scallions, etc.) when I steam turbot, but are those too delicate for a whole fish roasting?

              1. re: Bostonbob3

                I like it simply done and served with the aforementioned beurre blanc or just lemon butter. I season the fish inside and out, and throw some lemons and celery inside. Be sure you or your fishmonger scales the fish. I only mention this because I once forgot.

                1. re: Bostonbob3

                  I simply season with salt and pepper and stuff some sliced lemon and onion into the cavity, along with some thyme sprigs or fennel fronds.

              2. Much of what we get as turbot is different from the European turbot which is firmer and sweeter. European turbot is usually flown in for high end restaurants. It is generally one of the most expensive item on the menu. The smaller North Atlantic turbot that we get are softer and milder. Much of what we buy in markets are previous frozen, therefore, watery, falls apart and difficult to cook. I rarely see turbot fresh in the San Francisco Bay Area. We do get fresh halibut certain times of the year.

                1 Reply
                1. re: PBSF

                  Exactly. Turbot in the US (like "Dover sole") is rarely the right thing or of the same condition it would be in Europe, and thus rarely justifies the price it sometimes claims based on the European reputation of the fish.

                  Generally, I only want fish that have been kept on ice rather than frozen, for the reason you note above. I can almost always tell when fish has been deep frozen; it never seems as succulent in texture as fish that have merely been kept cold on ice.