Mackerel is a commercial fish that is valued for fatty meat, an abundance of vitamins (especially rich in vitamin B12), a lack of small bones, a reasonable price and, of course, taste. Mackerel is also good because it can be purchased fresh and frozen. It is also sold in processed form, that is, salted or smoked. In whatever form you buy it, it must be properly stored so that it will delight you with its benefits and excellent taste.
Mackerel: how to properly store
Storage conditions depend on what kind of fish you purchased. For this reason, you should tell about the storage of each type of mackerel separately.
Only those who live in the regions where they catch it can buy fresh mackerel themselves. If you have such an opportunity, then get a carcass with the head. Without a head, they often sell spoiled fish, so that the buyer would not be able to determine by the eyes and gills of mackerel that it is stale.
Fresh mackerel is best stored in the refrigerator. There it will remain fresh throughout the day. In purified form, that is, when there are no entrails, black film, tail and head, fresh mackerel will lie in the fridge for 2 days. Fresh fish should be stored on the lowest shelf of the refrigerator, that is, where it is the coldest.
If you need to keep the fish as long as possible, use the ice crumb. In her mackerel can not spoil about 10-14 days.
Sag is called a mackerel, which after salting is suspended. It is necessary to suspend fish in a room that is distinguished by dryness and good ventilation.
After hanging, hanging mackerel can be stored for up to 2-3 days, if it is tightly wrapped with either parchment or wax paper. If you cut sliced fish and put it in a glass container with vegetable oil, then in the refrigerator at 2-4 degrees it will remain fresh for about a week.
Although salted mackerel is not heat treated, it is relatively better stored than fresh fish. How much such a mackerel will remain fresh depends largely on the brine in which it was cooked. At home, salted fish stored without brine, or prepare it yourself.
Mackerel without brine should be stored in a refrigerator in a plastic bag at 3-5 degrees - so it remains edible for about a day. If the fish is cleaned and divided into pieces, and then pour vegetable oil and add spices, it will be stored at a temperature of from 3 to 5 degrees for about 5 days.
The fish can be stored in the refrigerator for about a week if it is in brine. Ensure that the pickle completely covers the fish. For its preparation you will need:
- salt - 3 tablespoons;
- granulated sugar - 2 tablespoons;
- water - 1 liter;
- spices - to taste.
If there is a need to preserve salted mackerel for more than a week, freeze it by wrapping it well with cling film or placing it in a container. Salted mackerel can be kept in the freezer as much as fresh frozen meat, for 2-3 months.
Mackerel is not a product that can be stored for a long time, because it is not known how long it was in the store. The maximum shelf life of this fish is 2-3 months, provided that the carcasses of the fish have absolutely no damage.
To freeze the mackerel, each carcass is placed in a separate container, which is wrapped in a bag. The best place to mackerel quick freeze. The temperature in the freezer should be from -24 to -15 degrees. Please note that the fish do not tolerate re-freezing.
After freezing, mackerel will not lose its dense structure, if it is properly defrosted. Fish should be laid out on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator for 10-12 hours. It is desirable that the fish be on the grid, so that the thawed water is not absorbed into it.
Smoked mackerel is a sought-after delicacy that can be found on sale in several forms: with and without a head, with guts or peeled of them. Smoking this fish is done in two main ways - cold or hot. Depending on the method of smoking, the product differs in storage conditions and shelf life.
Cold-smoked mackerel should be kept in the refrigerator, wrapped in paper, at a temperature of 1 to 3 degrees - then it stays fresh for about a week. Without paper, the fish is stored for no more than 3 days, and in a vacuum package remains suitable for food for 2-3 months. The freezer is also a good option for storage, fish can be stored in it for 30 days. Hot smoked mackerel has a shorter shelf life. In the refrigerator from 0 to 2 degrees, it is desirable to store it for no more than 3 days, while placing it in a zip-package. Vacuum packaging allows you to save hot-smoked mackerel for about 2 months, and in the freezer it does not lose its taste and texture for 3 weeks.
How to tell if a product has gone bad
There are several criteria that will help to understand for sure whether the mackerel has deteriorated.
- The smell of mackerel is evidenced by its smell. Spoiled fish has a sour, unappetizing smell.
- Dirty gray or greenish bloom also indicates that rotting processes are actively developing in fish.
- A stale mackerel becomes slippery to the touch.
- And the last aspect that indicates fish spoilage is the appearance of mold. Such a mackerel is extremely dangerous.
Seafood poisoning is considered the most dangerous, so always observe the storage conditions for mackerel and carefully monitor its freshness. Only in this case, the fish will benefit and delight their taste.