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Fish Head


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I was some COD heads at the local korean grocery and bought it on impulse. Not really cooked it in past to eat specifically the head (have bought whole fish which I steam).

I cooked in as a part of a very spicy korean fish stew. It was great. As I was devouring the fish, they were some great meaty parts and bones which I expected. However, there were a lot of jelatious parts as well and the eyes. The questions is which parts can I eat? Are there parts on the head that I shouldn't eat (other than the bones).

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For the gelatinous parts, just stick 'em in your mouth and move everything around in there to pull off the good stuff, then spit out the bones. No one I knew ever ate the eyes, though I once ate a fish eyeball on a dare. It tastes very bland, like cartilage. When I was growing up the conventional (Chinese) wisdom said that the head is the best part of the fish. I don't agree, but it's worth trying to see if you like it.

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When I was growing up the conventional (Chinese) wisdom said that the head is the best part of the fish. I don't agree, but it's worth trying to see if you like it.

My wife grew up in Shandong. In her family, the head is the part you give to guests as an honor. I grew up in New York, and we always cut the head off as part of cleaning the fish, and I never saw one on my plate. So imagine my first experience, eating my first fish head in front of my wife's very old-school Chinese parents my first time visiting their home. The things we do for love. :)

But yes even now when we steam a whole fish, my wife always takes the fish head and, with chopsticks and a little ingenuity, reduces it to a little pile of bones.

Edited by Batard (log)

"There's nothing like a pork belly to steady the nerves."

Fergus Henderson

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the eyes are made of two parts, a hard cartilaginous (sp?) part that is colored, and a soft gelatinous part that is basically the whole rest of the eye.

While all of it is edible, i would avoid the colored part as it doesnt taste particularly good.

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The eyes are my favorite.

You can also crack open the skull and suck out the brains, which are pretty rich and gelatinous.

when the kids were small they used to fight over who got the eyes...I was curious so tried one, tasted like a salty grape (not flavour, texture) with a hard pebble in the middle....I prefer the cheeks

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I don't doubt that I'm missing out on some good eating but, for me personally, the only edible part of the head is everything behind it except the innards, fins and bones. I use that stuff (minus the innards which go straight to the bin) for stock.

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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