How to clean fish
Clean one fish at a time. Keep the cold fish remaining in the cooler while you work.
Hold the fish firmly by the head and scrape the scales off the tail towards the gills with a butter knife or scaling tool. Test the correct pressure, the ladders should come off easily and fly away.
Keep the blows of your knife short and fast. Avoid pressing too hard and slashing the fish.
Work carefully around the fins because they can sting or pierce the skin.
Be sure to remove all scales from both sides of the fish. Do not forget the scales around the pectoral and dorsal fins, and up to the throat, which is at the edge of the fish’s gills.
Rinse fish with high pressure water to remove loose scales
You start the evisceration process by slipping the tip of your fillet knife into the wind and slicing upward – away from the fish, and away from the guts – to the head.
You finish the cut by forcing the knife through the bony part between the pelvic fins (those that are paired on the belly of the fish) and to the base of the lower jaw.
You remove the guts by reaching in their grabbing and right at the base of the head, where you will feel all connect. Pinch this place and pull the whole lot out. On the big fish that you will have to cut with your knife – be careful not to cut yourself!
The gills will give a bitter taste to your fish, and it will spoil quickly. You can more easily do this by cutting them where they attach to each end of the arc that it forms. I use kitchen scissors, but you can use your knife. Small fish, you can simply pull them out.
Once the attachments are cut, you can remove the gills easily.
Now wash the fish, scale well in ice water, then pack on a bed of crushed ice until you are ready to cook.