Cooking On A Budget: Stripper Bass

Friday, September 14, 2012

Stripper Bass


My husband gets up early and goes to bed early (usually asleep by 7:30) but there are exceptions - golf night and going fishing with a friend. Go figure, huh? The saving grace is that I get some alone time on a Tuesday night (golf night) and some fresh caught fish for a dinner when he ventures out on fishing trip with a friend.
He catches, he cleans and he cooks the fish - he insists. Despite the fact that he browned the fish a tad too much and his homemade fries, it was a delicious meal with the addition of a nice side salad with homemade Parmesan Peppercorn Dressing and Homemade Tartar Sauce.
We live along the Connecticut River not far from Long Island Sound. Stripper Bass fishing begins in late May and early June and continues through September as long as the water temperature is around 50 degrees.
Stripper Bass is also known as Rockfish and can be prepared in a variety of ways: fried, baked, poached or grilled. The younger the fish - between 18" which is the legal limit and 36" are the best. The younger the fish, the better the texture. I learned that as the fish ages that the texture changes. A younger Stripper Bass after blood lines are removed is a nice meaty and flaky white fish with a mild flavor.

  • Stripper Bass - 3/4 inch thick
  • oil
  • butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Choosing to pan fry the fish was my husbands choice. With a combination of olive oil and butter, he simply seasons both sides of the fish with a light sprinkling of kosher salt and black pepper.
  2. The breading was some pounded down panko bread crumbs seasoned with the addition of 1/4 tsp.  salt and black pepper.
  3. He first dipped the fish in an egg wash (eggs and milk mixed), then in the panko breading.
  4. When the skillet heats up over medium heat and the butter comes up to a full bubble, the fish goes in the pan and cooks over medium low heat for about 8 minutes on the first side, then gets flipped over and cooks for about 2 minutes on the second side.
The cooking time does vary depending on the thickness of the fish. The overall cooking time should be around 10 minutes per inch at the thickest part of the fish. Despite the more darkened looking end result, the fish was perfectly cooked. (Psst - he forgot to turn the heat down soon enough!)

The salad with our garden tomatoes and peppers
rounded out the dinner.

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