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Correct oil temperature and cooking time for fish fry?? - Walleye Message Central
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  #1  
Old 09-12-2008, 01:38 PM
retire55 retire55 is offline
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Question Correct oil temperature and cooking time for fish fry??

For years, I simply fried walleye fillets in a frying pan with a little butter and some salt and pepper. I've also experimented with some poaching recipes. Now, I'd like to learn how to properly deep fry battered walleye pieces.

One problem I've experienced so far is the temperature of the cooking oil. The batter mix I use (Rocky Madsen's Fish Crisp) recommends preheating the oil to 375 degrees F. Although my thermometer may be way off, deep frying battered fillets anywhere above 340 degrees F seems to turn the battered fillet a very dark brown (unappealing to me). Consequently, I've been experimenting with the cooking oil (Canola) temperature around 280 to 300 degrees F and I've been happier with the light brown colour of the cooked pieces. What cooking oil temperature works best for you? Is there a cooking oil that is better to use than all others?

The second problem I've had is determining the proper cooking time. No one likes over cooked walleye. A couple of weeks ago I was trying to deep fry pieces of walleye fillets from one four pound walleye and one two pound walleye. I separated each fillet into two pieces along the lateral line and then cut into chunky pieces. Is there a secret to knowing how long you cook pieces of differing thicknesses without breaking the pieces apart to see.

Comments/recommendations appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 09-12-2008, 01:47 PM
bob oh bob oh is offline
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Oil temps below abou 350 let your batter soak up the oil so your fish are greasy. 375 is my favorite temp. If they are dark brown it is either the color of you batter or they are overcooked. Drop the chunks in 375 degree oil; fish them out when they float. Should be a nice brown with a nice moist texture inside....
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Old 09-12-2008, 02:01 PM
teaser teaser is offline
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Default 375 on the Oil

Bob's right on the money.

Depending on the method used to cook the chunks, they may not float. Depending on the size, perhaps 4 to 5 minutes...for the uppers. When you have various sizes, I tried to segregate to maintain cooking consistency and when I place them into the basket, put the larger ones in first. Open a cold one... or so and you'll get it down.
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Old 09-12-2008, 02:17 PM
bob oh bob oh is offline
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Teaser's right, I make my chunks as close to same size as possible and put like sized chunks in the oil. experiment and they'll work out.
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Old 09-12-2008, 02:20 PM
jokerjim jokerjim is offline
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Default cooking oil

I use peanut oil. I was told it burns at higher temperature.
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Old 09-12-2008, 02:34 PM
bob oh bob oh is offline
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it won't burn at 375 = 400, I sometimes use and sometimes canola. Low heat gives you greasy fish and causes a lot of breadings to wash off. I am not a cook but I play like I am LOL
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Old 09-12-2008, 03:50 PM
PAS PAS is offline
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I think Peanut oil "holds heat" better than canola oil. Canola oil might start to smoke close to 400 degrees. With either, to get the fish nice and crisp you need to get to 375 or more, put in your fish, and be prepared to "manage" the heat as when you dump in the fish you can start to loose heat......sometimes fast.....this is where having an open beer is useful.....gives you something to do while you watch the fish.
Four to five minutes........or until they float......personal preference on more moist meat or more cooked meat. Experiment a little.
With more than one batch, peanut oil probably won't turn dark as quickly as canola.
You've chosen the right way to fry fish............I remember those days of using the fry pan on the stove........wish I knew better then.
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Old 09-13-2008, 09:20 PM
Pro V1 Pro V1 is offline
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350 degrees for 3 minutes is the ticket! Also make sure to only put enough fillets in the basket to cover the bottom of it.
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Old 09-14-2008, 08:35 AM
Boatnut Boatnut is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jokerjim View Post
I use peanut oil. I was told it burns at higher temperature.

I use peanut oil exclusively and try for 375 to 400. depending on size of fillets , it can only take 3 to 5 mins. As far as when to tell if they are done....this pretty much comes with experience....or a timer. I've found that using the "when they float they are done" rule isn't always a good one. Often the fish are overdone. Fish "doneness" is a personal preference though. I like mine so the center is just "opaque" while others like it flaking all the way through.
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Old 09-14-2008, 10:05 AM
retire55 retire55 is offline
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Thanks for all the comments and recommedations. Sounds like the more times I cook walleye this way, the more confidence I'll probably develop.
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