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Freshwater Drum cooking suggestions

Discussion in 'Share Your Fish Cooking Recipes.' started by RDdoc, Jun 23, 2017.

  1. RDdoc

    RDdoc New Member

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    Anyone out there know to prepare freshwater drum/sunfish so it gets rid of the oily/fatty taste?
    Have tried pan frying with limited success. You could survive on it but there has to be a better way to make it taste good.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. chrism

    chrism Well-Known Member

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    Sunfish (including the rock bass, largemouth bass, bluegill, pumpkinseed, and crappies) and Freshwater drum are as different as two species can get - sunfish are not oily at all and best either batter and fry or bake/grill fillets over an open grill.... Freshwater drum, never tried it, but have had other oily fish - which i would smoke, or, bake wrapped in foil with a sliced up lemon, sliced onion, and seasonings of your choice - the lemon/onion will cut the grease significantly.
     
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  3. RDdoc

    RDdoc New Member

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    Thank you for the suggestions. Will smoke the next drum i harvest.
    "Sunfish" is one of local names for drum around here.
     
  4. Grim

    Grim Active Member

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    If you are serious about eating freshwater drum I suggest bleeding the fish out asap and getting it on ice, this leads to a better quality of meat all around. When and if filleting them, they fillet different than a walleye. Videos on youtube provide plenty of direction. When skinning the fillets go a millimeter or two above the skin leaving the bloodline behind on the skin.
    My favorite -> Cut up fillets into chunks and bring some salted water to a boil. Drop them in boiling water and once it comes back to a boil, 3-4 minutes and they are done. Serve with melted butter. (can also serve cold with seafood sauce, kinda like shrimp)
    Second is smoked.
    Third is blackened.
    Fourth is beer battered.
    Fifth is baked/bbq.

    I have found ideal eaters to be 16-20 inches. These fish grow to that size "relatively" quickly and after that their growth rate slows significantly. They can also surpass 75 years of age.
     
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  5. Ernie

    Ernie Administrator Staff Member

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    The sooner you can get them on ice the better. Once the meat warms up you may as well put it through the grinder, mix in some old bread and buns, and use it for dog food.

    Once chilled, gut it and cut the head and tail of. You can also do that before chilling, but do it right away. The longer you wait the mushier it'll turn out.

    Then just BBQ it as you would a trout or as mentioned above.

    That's how I used to do it. It can atcually taste quite good if done right.

    Myself I very seldom keep anything other than the odd pike and walleye anymore. Doubt I take home more than a dozen fish a year. Biggest reason, takes to much time away from actual fishing!
     
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  6. mrwalleye5

    mrwalleye5 Active Member

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    I'm same as you, Ernie, don't eat much fish at all. Caring for them less and less all the time. If I could get the "rabbit ears" off of them and let them go that would be great!
     
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  7. Dave

    Dave Well-Known Member

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    Yes, but fresh Lakers, mmm mmm, you got to keep some eaters.
     
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  8. WalleyeSlayer

    WalleyeSlayer Active Member

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    I did some experimenting on Drum a few years ago, and had posted the results on the other forum; since it is relevant, I'll cross-post.

    I decided to play around a little to give them a fair chance...
    All fish were filleted and de-boned as a walleye, but with a little extra liberty to cut off the fatty looking meat at the belly

    1. First fillet went straight into the hot cast iron pan with a little butter/olive oil, no seasoning/spices.
    Review: Overall ok, fairly strong 'fish' taste that I didn't mind but my wife didn't care for. Nice firm flaky white meat.

    2. Second fillet lightly dusted with Shore lunch Italian and pan fried the same as above.
    Review: slightly less 'fishy' tasting, but still not a fav. for the wife.

    3. Third fillet lightly dusted in Shore lunch cajun and pan fried the same.
    Review: I quite enjoyed this one, but it presented the problem of still being too 'fishy' and now too spicy for the wife. lol.

    4. Fourth fillet, bare went into a simmering pan of Italian salad dressing and poached.
    review: Best so far, a lot less fishy taste, still not a fav for the wife.
    Note: This is her favourite way for Walleye.

    5. Soaked fillet in milk for about a half hour, rinsed and pan fried same as #1.
    Review: Next to no 'fishy' taste, wife approved!

    6. Soaked as above, then cooked in salad dressing like #4.
    Review: Couldn't tell the difference in taste between the drum, smallmouth bass and walleye. Texture VERY similar to walleye.

    Overall impression:

    A versatile fish, with some flavour. If people are not fans of strong tasting fish (orange roughie, bluefish, etc.) they wouldn't like the first four methods tried, but I do and I did. For the tamer at heart, the milk soaking did wonders to remove the gamyness and make it enjoyable for my wife.

    I would definitely keep them again in the future!
     
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  9. RDdoc

    RDdoc New Member

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    nkn

    Thank you for the suggestions. Actually caught a beautiful 19 inch drum late yesterday. Tried to smoke it using the bbq but didnt work out as planned. Though the fish turned out better than the pan fry. Less oil/fatty taste.
    Next one i will try and soak in milk then cook.
    A fun fish to catch.
     
  10. Patty

    Patty Well-Known Member

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    I read this and puked in my mouth a bit........... enjoy lol
     
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  11. Mike B.

    Mike B. Well-Known Member

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    I read this and puked in Patty's mouth...then he puked while punching me....then we both puked. Then while cleaning up all the puke, I re-read this and puked again.

    In complete honesty, if you enjoy catching and killing Drum to eat, I wish you the best Drum fishing ever, and would encourage you to fish them down to an endangered species in Lk Wpg :thumbsup1:
     
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  12. craigm

    craigm Well-Known Member

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  13. WalleyeSlayer

    WalleyeSlayer Active Member

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    Sorry Mike B... Sorry that you can't expand your horizons. But hey... I guess that just means more selection for more open minded people.

    Cheers
     
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