About Fresh Water Fish
Rivers, lakes, and ponds are common fresh water resources. A fresh water fish spends most of its life in fresh water. These fishes cannot survive saline conditions. If the salinity of water increases more than 0.1 percent, the life of fresh water fishes will face potential threat. More than 40 percent fish species live in fresh water resources.
Fresh water fish is delicious. Recipes for preparing fresh water fish food can easily be found onilne. People visit famous restaurants just to taste the fresh water fish on the menu.
If you prefer, you can easily prepare any type of fish food at home. Salmon is a good fish, widely seen in rivers. Plan a trip to nearest river and enjoy fishing with your family and friends. Then double the pleasure by having a nice meal with your family and friends, eating the fresh fish you caught.
Buffalo Fish: A moderate fat fish with a firm texture. Usually caught in the Mississippi and the Great Lakes. Weighs in fresh at two to eight pounds.
Similar to carp, this freshwater fish is a member of the sucker family. It has a coarse but sweet, lean flesh that can be baked, poached, sauteed or grilled. Buffalo fish can be purchased whole or in fillets or steaks. It's especially good in its smoked form.
Carp: The first fish to be aquacultured hundreds of years ago in China. A scavenger fish which is only recommended for fishing if aquacultured. Usually a moderate fat fish.
The carp was originally from Asia, whence it was early introduced into Europe, where it is extensively reared in artificial ponds. Within a few years it has been introduced into America, and widely distributed by the government. Domestication has produced several varieties, as the leather carp, which is nearly or quite destitute of scales, and the mirror carp, which has only a few large scales. Intermediate varieties occur.
Catfish: Approximately 70 percent of all catfish sold are from aquacultured farms. There are over 20 varieties of catfish. They are lo in fat with a firm texture. Another scavenger fish which is healthier and only purchased from the farms.
This fish gets its name from its long, whiskerlike barbels (feelers), which hang down from around the mouth. Most catfish are freshwater fish, though there is also a saltwater variety sometimes referred to as hogfish.
The majority of the catfish in today's market are farmed. The channel catfish, weighing from 1 to 10 pounds, is considered the best eating. The bullhead is smaller and usually weighs no more than a pound. Catfish have a tough, inedible skin that must be removed before cooking. The flesh is firm, low in fat and mild in flavor. Catfish can be fried, poached, steamed, baked or grilled. They are also well suited to soups and stews.
Perch: A small fish which is usually pan-fried whole. A low in fat, firm textured fish that is excellent eating.
In the United States the best known perch is the yellow perch, found mainly in the East and Midwest. In France, the common or river perch is highly favored. These similar-looking fish have olive-green backs blending to yellow on the sides, dark vertical bands and reddish-orange fins. They have a mild, delicate flavor and firm flesh with a low fat content.
Related to the true perch are the pike perch (so called because their bodies resemble the pike), the best known of which are the walleyed pike and the sauger or sand pike. There are several saltwater fish that are incorrectly called perch including the white perch (really a member of the bass family) and the ocean perch (a member of the rockfish family). Perch range in size from 1/2 to 3 pounds. They're available fresh and frozen, whole and filleted. Small perch are usually best broiled or sauteed. Larger ones can be prepared in a variety of ways including poaching, steaming, baking and in soups and stews.
Pike: Has been fished out of existence. An excellent eating fish, low in fat. The most popular being the Walleyed Pike.
Pike is a family of freshwater fish that includes the pike, pickerel and muskellunge. They all have long bodies, large mouths and ferocious-looking teeth. Pickerel are the smallest -- generally weighing 2 to 3 pounds. Pike range from 4 to 10 pounds and the muskellunge (or muskie) averages from 10 to 30 pounds but can reach up to 60 pounds and 6 feet in length. The walleyed pike is not a pike but rather a perch. The pike family of fish is known for its lean, firm, lowfat (but bony) flesh. Although fished mainly for sport in the United States, they are imported from Canada and available fresh and frozen, either whole, filleted or in steaks. Pike can be cooked in almost any manner available.
Smelt: A very small fish that is usually pan fried and eaten whole (head and all). Larger ones are usually cleaned and gutted in the usual manner. They are high in fat with a firm texture.
Smelt is a small (average 4 to 7 inches long) fish with a translucent silver-green back shading into shimmering silver sides and belly. Its delicate flesh is rich, oily and mild-flavored. There are many varieties of this fish, the most widely distributed being the rainbow smelt, found along the Atlantic coast. Two popular Pacific Coast varieties are whitebait and eulachon. The latter is also called candlefish, a nickname that came about because Indians would dry these high-fat fish, run a wick through the flesh and use them for candles.
Fresh smelts are best from September through May. Because they're very perishable, many are now flash-frozen immediately after being caught. They are also available canned. Smelts are marketed whole and are usually eaten that way -- head, viscera and bones. Though they can be cooked in a variety of ways, they're generally simply coated with flour and fried.
Sturgeon: The largest freshwater fish in the world. They can weigh up to 1000 pounds. They are high in fat with a very dense texture. Their eggs (roe) are a favorite for caviar.
This prized fish was so favored by England's King Edward II that he gave it royal status, which meant that all sturgeon caught had to be offered to the king.
The sturgeon's long, thin body is pale gray and has large scales. Its rich, high-fat flesh has a fresh, delicate flavor and is so firm that it's almost meatlike. Sturgeon are fished in the Black and Caspian Seas and in the United States, mainly in the Pacific Northwest and along the Southern Atlantic. The best U.S. Variety is the white sturgeon, and the smaller specimens are considered the best eating. Fresh sturgeon comes whole (up to about 8 pounds), in steaks or in chunks. It can be braised, grilled, broiled, sauteed or baked. The supply of this fish in its fresh form, however, is limited and most of that caught in U.S. Waters is smoked. Frozen and canned (pickled or smoked) forms are also available.
Trout: There are three main varieties, Lake Trout, Rainbow Trout and Steelhead. All contain moderate to high levels of fat with a firm texture. One of the best eating fishes with a delicate flavor. All Rainbow Trout are presently from aquacultured farms.
Though most trout are freshwater fish, some live in marine waters. When the first European settlers arrived in North America, trout were very abundant. By the late 1860s, however, a number of factors including overfishing and pollution caused the trout population to diminish drastically. By the end of the 19th century trout hatcheries-along with other prevention and regenerative measures taken to forest all the extinction of this delicious fish were in existence. Today trout are plentiful and vary widely in appearance and size.
Trout are available whole, fresh and frozen and in fillets. They're most often fried but can also be poached, baked, steamed, grilled and broiled. Whole trout is often stuffed before being cooked. In addition to fresh and frozen, trout can also be found canned, smoked and kippered.
Try Smoked Trout on Finn Crisp Crackers
2 teaspoons whipped cream cheese
1 Finn Crisp cracker
1 ounce smoked trout
Freshly grated lemon zest
Spread the cream cheese on the Finn Crisp. Top with the trout and sprinkle with the lemon zest.
Whitefish: Ranks as the best freshwater eating fish. It is high in fat with a firm texture and is best when broiled or baked.
Found in lakes and streams throughout North America, the whitefish is a member of the salmon family. Its high-fat, mild-flavored flesh is firm and white. Fresh whitefish can be found year-round and are generally marketed whole (from 2 to 6 pounds) or in fillets. They're also available frozen and smoked. Whitefish can be poached, baked, broiled or grilled. The roe can be cooked or used for caviar.
See also: Choosing and Cooking Fresh Fish
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