May 21st, 2008|
West Erie County, DWCO Randy Leighton, WCO Brook Tolbert
Free Fishing This Saturday:
Arguably, most anglers start out the sport by targeting pan fish either by choice or by accident and frankly there are many seasoned anglers that fish for nothing else simply for the mouthwatering taste and the great action. Bluegill, Sunfish, Pumpkin seeds, or Bream as they are collectively called are the easiest fish to catch, are plentiful, and make darn good table fare. Crickets, worms, small jigs and spinners, grubs, micro crank baits, and small spider imitations are all great baits. Ounce for ounce, these fish will provide great action and are always plentiful enough to keep the even the most impatient angler busy. Try areas near shore where there is cover such as down trees or rocks and especially around docks and ramps where fishing is permitted. A rod, reel, small hooks, some split shot, small bobbers, a stringer or bucket to keep your catch, a small knife and a small pair of pliers should be enough to get you started. Pan fish are eager biters and with a little patience you can have a great day of fun. Good areas to target are shallow water along the shore line around the Bay, around docks and piers, and through out the Bay if you have access to boat.
Cooking That Catch: 1) Fresh fish is best. If you are able to enjoy at least part of your catch before freezing, it will taste better. If you are freezing your fish, pat it dry and double wrap it. I personally do not believe in freezing whole fish in ice. Fish frozen in ice may become water logged as it thaws which will adversely affect cooking and taste. (Freezing fillets in ice will however, keep fish fresh longer in the freezer.)
2) Be extremely careful not to overcook the fish. Fish are delicate. Do not cook your fillets too long or at too high a temperature. This will make the fish tough and rubbery. Cook the fish only until it flakes easily at the touch of a fork. Fish cooks much faster than most people realize.
3) If you are going to batter fry the fish, always make sure the batter is cold and the fish are patted dry. Cold batter will prevent the fish from absorbing too much oil. Also, make sure the oil is hot. This can be done by dropping in a small piece of bread or batter in. It should brown within a minute.
4) To keep fried fish crispier while cooking, put the cooked fish in a warm oven on a wire rack over a paper towel-lined plate.
5) Never be afraid to experiment with different recipes. Try changing the seasonings to the liking of your personal taste.
6) Spend the extra time making sure no bones remain in your fillets. Nothing puts off the appetite more quickly than finding bones in your fish. (Just ask my wife and kids)
7) Leftover fish? Cut it into bite sized pieces and add it to a salad or have it cold with cocktail sauce.
8) Try the microwave if you're dieting. Fish cooks quickly and tastes great with just lemon juice and seasoning. Watch the fish carefully, the micro cooks it quick.
9) Basting lean fish such as walleye and bass when broiling will help keep them from drying out.
Have a Safe Holiday Weekend:
Local Weather: Wednesday Night...Showers likely. Lows in the lower 40s. West winds around 15 mph. Chance of rain 70 percent.
Thursday...Mostly cloudy. Highs in the mid 50s. Northwest winds around 15 mph.
Thursday Night...Becoming partly cloudy. Lows in the lower 40s. Northwest winds 10 to 15 mph.
Friday...Partly cloudy. Highs in the upper 50s.
Friday Night...Partly cloudy. Lows in the mid 40s.
Saturday...Becoming mostly sunny. Highs in the lower 60s.
Saturday Night...Mostly clear. Lows in the upper 40s.
Sunday...Mostly sunny. Highs in the lower 70s.
Sunday Night...Mostly clear. Lows in the lower 50s.
Memorial Day...Partly cloudy. Highs in the mid 70s.
Monday Night...Becoming mostly cloudy. A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Lows in the upper 50s. Chance of rain 30 percent.
Tuesday...Mostly cloudy with a chance of showers and thunderstorms. Highs in the lower 70s. Chance of rain 40 percent.