Introduction: How to Pan Fry Mackerel

About: Inventor and Emergency Doctor.

In this Instuctable you will learn how to pan fry mackerel so the skin is crispy and the meat is lightly cooked and not dry. I served the mackerel with stir fried new potatoes and beansprouts; I will post the recipe for this soon.


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Step 1: You Will Need

1) Fresh mackerel. I find that using frozen mackerel doesn't work as well; the skin often comes off.

2) Oil. I prefer olive but you can use whichever is your favourite.

3) Salt.

Step 2: Add the Oil

Start with a low-medium heat and add a tablespoon and a half of oil to a good non-stick pan.

Step 3: Keep Them Moving!

Allow 30 seconds or so for the oil to start to heat up then add the mackerel skin-side down. This is the crucial part; you don't want the skin to stick to the pan and come off otherwise it's game over. The key is to start on a low heat and keep the pan moving gently for the first five minutes so the fish don't stick. If they do stick, gently free them with a silicon or wooden spatula. The video shows the gentle movement.

Step 4: Five Minutes

After five minutes you are out of the woods and you don't need to agitate them so much. Turn up the temperature slightly and cook for another 3-4 minutes. As you can see in the picture, after this time the edge of the skin has browned and the flesh has cooked about halfway up. I occasionally tip the pan so the fish sits in deeper oil for a few seconds at the edge of the pan, helping to brown the skin evenly. You can lift the edge gently with a spatula to check it is cooked enough.

Step 5: Turn Over and Cook the Other Side

Gently turn the fish and cook on the other side for about one minute. You can check it's not looking pink before you take it off the heat. Transfer it from the pan as soon as it is done otherwise it will carry on cooking and you risk overcooking it. Add a dash of salt to taste.

Step 6: Dinner Time!

I served mine with roasted new potatoes in their skins stir fried with beansprouts, fresh coriander, soy, lemon and chilli. I will post the recipe if you are interested.