The Trick To Locking In Flavor When Cooking Fish Fillets

Fish fillets can make a great dinner any night of the week. Whether it's as an entree for a weekend dinner party or a quick weeknight meal, fish is one of the best protein options available (via WebMD).

There are tons of different ways to cook fish. It can be fried, baked, roasted, poached, grilled, and even microwaved if it suits you (via H-E-B). According to Choose Your Fish, there is also a huge variety of flavors and textures within the realm of seafood; ranging from delicate and sweet to firm and oily. This wide selection gives you more options to get creative, branch out, or just appease the picky eaters of the family.

Fish also cooks incredibly quickly. As Fine Cooking notes, most white fish fillets should be cooked in less than 10 minutes. This is because they are fairly lean, and without having as much fat as a cut of steak or pork belly, they can dry out quickly. This is also a frequent problem when preparing tuna despite its higher fat content (via BBC Good Food). Luckily, there is an easy way to prevent any type of fish fillet from drying out and lock in its flavor.

Roll your fish fillets

In order to get the best-finished product from your fish fillets, roll them before you begin cooking. According to Fine Cooking, rolling the fillet helps keep the juice and seasoning in the meat where it belongs. Serious Eats notes that this technique also addresses the frequent problem of dealing with uneven-shaped fillets. Some cuts of white fish will come in a teardrop shape where the meat tapers and thins out at one end. While this might look nice, it can also cause the thinner end to become an overcooked crisp while the other end finishes cooking. Rolling the fillet is kind of like tying a beef tenderloin; it creates an even shape that locks in the juices, improves the texture and shape, and produces a superior final product.

According to Serious Eats, rolling or folding your fish is quite an easy process. Simply score a light cut about a quarter of the way up the fish from the thin end; just be careful not to cut all the way through. This technique will give your fillet just enough flexibility to let it fold or roll gently without falling apart and trap all of its precious moisture inside while it cooks evenly.