Truth be told, I never really liked cat fish. One of the reasons being that it’s slimy. I cringe whenever I see the yucky slime that comes with it. As in, those things stick to your teeth and it becomes annoying. I read somewhere that the slime does have some benefits (topic for another day)
Apart from the slimy things on the fish, I could not find any wildly grown cat fish. Yes, I kind of like the wild raised fish and yes it is kind of better for you. For these two reasons I gave up the cat fish for a while 🙂
After years of not eating cat fish, I decided to research ways to clean it and after asking 101 questions, I came up with the best and working process for me; which I hope works for you too.
For some, alum works the magic; just like with cleaning snails. Now, what is alum? Alum is a chemical compound which is the hydrated form of potassium aluminum sulfate. Although it does have a lot of amazing benefits, I try to stay clear of these chemicals except I really have the need for it.
For some, the use of ash and a sponge works. It was so fascinating to read what some of the members of the Facebook food group “So you think you can cook” had to say about cleaning cat fish. Some used ash, salt, lemon, lime and the list goes on.
I have to say, this process is simple and short, but if you are using the fish’s head; then special attention has to be paid to it as it does contain a lot of blood and can hoard worms easily as opposed to the other parts of the fish. Cat fish are known to roll in mud; hence it is easy for anything to breed inside of them.
When it comes to cleaning the other parts of the fish, I use hot water and a blunt knife. And as for the head, I add some salt and a little lime to help with the cleaning process.
If you ever had a fear of “the slime,” just follow the process below and enjoy your catfish with your favorite recipe 🙂
Here is the process without further ado
- 1 cat fish with head inclusive
- half of a lemon or lime
- hot boiling water
- Gut, cut, clean and rinse the cat fish; then place it into a bowl
- Bring some water to a roaring boil and pour it over the fish. Let it sit in the water for about 2 minutes. This will help the cat fish to stay intact when cooking and remove the slime. You should be able to see the slime come off the fish once in the hot water
- Drain the water from the fish and using a blunt knife, scrape the slime off the fish and rinse in cold water
- If using the head, make sure to split it long ways, pour in some hot water and salt then squeeze in some lime. Let it sit for 2 minutes. Drain; then using a blunt knife make sure to scrape off the slime and thoroughly wash the blood off the fish
- Once the fish is clean, use it with your favorite recipe
If you have a problem using the hot water as a process, try dipping the fish into the hot water and removing it promptly. Or you could use the alum method to wash off the slime. soak alum and fish in some warm water and wash gently with your hands.
You could try the use of ash and a sponge too