Masterclass: How to Fillet a Fish

Masterclass: How to Fillet a Fish

Follow these six steps provided by Andy Mackensie, Executive Chef with Exclusive Hotels based at the Chefs' Academy Lainston House, to perfect filleting. Here Andy fillets a locally farmed ChalkStream Trout from the chalk filtered gin clear wates of the River Test. Why use salmon when we have such a fresh and delicious local alternative?

The steps are shown in sequence in the montage (below) - from top to bottom and left to right.

Step 1 Wonder in amazement at the size and quality of this locally farmed ChalkStream trout!

Step 2 Remove the head from behind the gills, turning the fish over and cutting through the spine.

Step 3 From the head to tail run a sharp knife along the spine cutting through the rib cage. 

Step 4 Turn the fish over and repeat.

Step 5 To remove the ribs put your knife under the rib bones from the middle of the fish, and lift and cut down towards the belly, taking them out in one piece ideally (trying to take just the bones and not the flesh in the process).

Step 6 Trim off the belly and remove the pin bones with fish pliers.

You are now ready to portion up or leave whole and can cook in so many different ways as well as curing and smoking this beautiful tasting fish.