How to Make Your Initial Flounder Fillet Cuts

Learn how to fillet flounder by making cuts at the head, tail and middle in this second video of a 4-part Howcast series with Chef Brendan McDemott.

Transcript

What you want to do is you want to start off with a point A to start your cut, and then get to a point B. Point A is actually starting up around their eyes over here, because what they have is a skull that kind of goes around. Their gill line and their skull kind of come up around here.

Now, because flounder is a flat fish it's going to be kind of odd. They're little monsters. They have their eyes on one side. They start off as round fish but then start to flatten out. So what we're going to do is we're just going to follow around the top of the head using the belly of the knife. There's never any reason to stab anything.

So what we're going to do is just cut in there, and then once you break skin you can slowly pull the knife back and underneath that wing fin just like that. And what you've created is a nice little line that's going to give you a starting point.

The second part we want to do is we want to come down to the tail. Right where the fin ends, you can see the fins up along the top and the bottom, we're going to come right down to the end of the tail and just give that a clean cut.

Now what we have is our point A and point B. You can take your knife, and what we're going to do here is do four filets because this is a rather big fish. If you're doing two filets you'd do it like a round fish and come up from the top. But because this is a pretty big one we're going to start by drawing a line, not cutting anything, but drawing a line from its nose to point A.

We're pretty much in the center of the fish. I can now then take the knife and, again, just saw back and forth until you get a line or until you break skin, and then take the knife and pull back.

Now, a lot of the time you should make sure that your fish is scaled. If not, some of the little ones like flounder, they tend to have little, small scales. Just be careful when drawing that line because what happens is you'll get build up on the back of the knife which can slip. So, you always want to make sure you have a little rag on hand and be able to just clear that right away. You don't want to get cut if the knife slips.

Now you have a nice line going right down the center of the fish. From this point we can now then get our filets.

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