Cooking fish in microwave?
- BluPlateSpec Jul 19, 2013 04:07 PM
I want to cook fish fillets im my microwave. Using a parchment paper pouch how long would cook it at full power?
I have cooked salmon fillets in parchment with ginger, garlic, soy sauce and lemon with a splash of dry sherry and a pat of butter. Cooked for a couple of minutes and then let it rest for a couple more. Hard to be precise on timing, but the method is a little forgiving because of the moisture.
It works, but I would first play around with the temp/time nuances of your microwave first with some cheap cuts of fish first (like cod or tilapia) before jumping in with the more expensive stuff like halibut or salmon.
You;ll have to go by trial and error by yourself. Your own microwave and your own fish are the variables that will be different than everyone else's.
I don't cook it in the microwave, but as others have said, it's totally possible, and one of the best fish dishes I've had was microwaved. It was during an Italian Feast of the Seven Seas dinners on xmas eve. The mother who oversaw preparation of all of the dishes we had that night shared her little secret with me after dinner. I gushed about the one fish dish, and she figured since I was eager to learn about several of the preps, that I knew what I was doing in the kitchen. She secretly told me the one dish was nuked, and I almost lost it. The rest of the kitchen helper people concurred her story after I made a scene assuming she was playing some kind of joke on me. It was whitefish sprinkled with breadcumbs, spinach, butter, lemon juice and olive oil - layered. so it was fish on the bottom, a very thin layer of the spinach, then dotted with butter, drizzled with lemon juice, sprinkled with a little lemon and breadcrumbs, Then another layer of fish topped with everything again. of course, the freshness of the fish was key, but this was WAAAAAAAAY better than you think. Nuked fish can be done, and if you are smart about it, nuked chicken breast comes out decently too. Of course, if you overcook anything, or are not familiar with how the power levels work, or how to watch cooking times in your microwave, things will come out funky.
I have a pretty strong microwave with the "inverter technology." If I wanted to cook a fish part in the microwave, I would do this:
Place the fattest part of the fish on the outside of the microwave tray, then i'd start with 45 seconds on full power to see how evenly it started to cook, and adjust the placement of the fish, and the time fo cooking from that point on.
This is one of the differences between chefs/cooks/kitchen ppl, and non kitchen ppl, and some of the non kicthen ppl get ired about answers like this. The simple answer is, you cook fish until it's done. There is no set time, just a guideline. You cook until it gets close, then you monitor closely until it's done. I really don't like overcooked fish, and most ppl don't like it either, that's why you watch it like a hawk - cooking times vary so much, and it can overcook quickly.
Go for it, and let us know how it turns out. I have to make that fish dish soon, now. Like I said, I don't really ever use the micro for fish, but I wouldn't be scared to do it. You just have to watch it, and I'd assume that the placement of the fish in the micro could effect the outcome. They generally cook from the outside in, iirc. so the outer parts would get cooked quicker. Rotating might be necessary. Good luck!!
gordeaux's Seven Seas Microwaved Fish sounds delicious. I will attempt it. Thank you also for the spot-on technical advice. In return, let me offer a quote from a previous thread that I can't locate: "Steamed: Go to the fish market and buy a whole white fish, whatever looks freshest. Salt it lightly inside and out. Place a layer of sliced ginger, slivered scallions, sliced shitake mushrooms and fermented black beans on top of the fish and sprinkle with Chinese cooking wine. Place a wet paper towel over it and microwave 2 minutes, turn180 degrees if fish is too big to rotate automatically, repeat, turn, repeat, etc until fish is cooked to desired firmness."
I have modified the recipe to start with any fish fillets instead of whole fish. It works quite well.
Nuking fish is a great way to prepare it. Thems that don't know about it are..... a bit clueless, sorry :-)
Asians have been doing it forever -- well, at least as long as MWs have been around.
One of my good friends from Hongkong "taught" me a lovely nuked salmon dish -- the filets are marinated in black bean sauce, among other things, then put in a bowl on top of scallion greens (those become a fab veggie side), pour over a mix of oyster sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and hot sauce. Nuke for approx. 5-6 minutes. While nuking, heat up a tbsp of peanut oil. When the fish is done, splash the hot, smoking oil over the fish. Top with more chopped scallion & cilantro.
It is truly delicious.
I absolutely agree with Gordeaux-- there are a lot of variables-- the texture of the fish, the power level of the microwave, etc. What I figured out when I cook salmon in the microwave (which I do often now), is that the best way is often to cook it a minute or so at the time, keeping an eye on the color, firmness and texture of the fish to determine your preferred level of doneness-- then after you've done a certain fish or fish dish this way, you'll have the method down pat. I have to just add, slightly off topic that the purist chefs who dismiss the idea are WRONG-- microwaved fish can be DELICIOUS. :)